- Joe Sims
Our Friends in Afghanistan
Good morning to our brilliant group,
This weeks’ International news has been heartbreaking, horrific and frustrating. The huge humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan is so scary and it’s getting worse each day. So, today’s nomination needs the briefest of introductions, it’s from Ceri and we agreed we should help the moment it arrived.
I hope you will consider supporting this appeal. I first came across the work of Turquoise Mountain a few years ago when I met one of its founders. I was really impressed to learn how it was supporting artists & crafts people to develop their heritage skills, in order to generate income and more widely to support education and health initiatives in Afghanistan. (You can see examples of the beautiful things produced on their website. )
We now know that, with international troop withdrawal, there is increasing violence across the country and that Afghanistan is facing a humanitarian crisis. I’ve watched and listened to news reports in the past few days with a growing fear and distress, as well as a sense of anger. People who believed that they had a future in the country are having this vision suddenly and brutally torn away from them. I’ve been incredibly moved by the testimony of young afghan people - particularly women who stand to lose so much - and by the video footage of the panic, chaos and bleak circumstances the people of Kabul face.
Turquoise Mountain has been established in Afghanistan for over 15 years. It works with a community of 200 dedicated staff; over 4000 talented arts/craft workers; hundreds of students at its vocational training institute and primary schools, as well as thousands of families that visit the health clinic.
As a result of recent events, Turquoise Mountain is now focusing on emergency food and other supply distribution, healthcare services for children and families, together with support for individuals and communities. The fact that it has an established network of program and staff means that the organisation can provide support swiftly and effectively – even during a crisis.
Whilst we as individual members of 500 Reasons can’t alter the course of political events across the world, I believe we can help make a real difference in the lives of thousands of people living in Afghanistan. I hope you agree.