Annual Report 2007

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Acknowledgements
Overview
Civil society and HAWCA’s role as an NGO
HAWCA plans for future
Education projects in Afghanistan (Literacy courses)
Women Center in Qala-e-Nazir
Literacy classes in Samangan
Primary Education
Peace Building program for Dara-i-Titeen Primary school (Nuristan)
Now Bolaq Primary School (Samangan)
Information Technology for Youth
HAWCA Peace Building Project
Education projects in Pakistan
Scholarship for Youth Professionals
Scholarship for Afghan children in Pakistani schools
Protection and Counseling (HAWCA’s Safe House "Khana-e-Amen")
HAWCA's Cultural Center
Jamila Micro-credit Project
Sponsorship
Nadia
Qadeer
Nazanin
Ayesha’s story
Mushtabah
Shabana
Lobbying for Women Human Rights
Participating in National seminars and conferences


HAWCA's Board of Directors Message

This is a great pleasure for us to announce that HAWCA has reached to its 8th years of establishment. HAWCA had started its activities when the most misogynist regime of Taliban was in power. But it is really sad to say that Afghan women are still the very first victims of violence all over the country. The graph of self-immolation amongst the women has reached to its shocking level, women are treated like animals in the remote areas of Afghanistan and most of the women are giving up their own lives in order to bring a new life on this earth.    

On the occasion of HAWCA’s 8th year, it is also worth to mention that HAWCA has a new Managing Director. Selay Ghafar another committed woman who joined HAWCA as program officer earlier has been elected by the HAWCA Board of Directors for this post. One of the HAWCA’s significant achievements is the fact that the organization is not dependant on a sole leader, rather a system –though still in high need of improvement- is in place which enables the organization to run on its own.

For those readers who doesn’t know enough about the history of HAWCA, we would like to say that the honor of HAWCA’s achievements, success in the past eight years goes to ALL its committed members who did not recognize day and night working to make a difference in the life of those in need. From the guards and cooks of the organization up to its founders and director all the staffs have played a crucial role to make all this possible to provide assistance and take part in the development process of Afghanistan.

HAWCA believes that without the cooperation of our direct and indirect beneficiaries we could not implement our projects even for a short time. Here we would to acknowledge their contribution and say that they are real heroes to us.  

The last but not least we would like to thank HAWCA’s partners, donors and individual supporters. They have done a great job, maybe we are geographically apart from each other but our hearts are always together. They are the ones that political boundaries didn't stop them from their humanitarian aid and supports. They have always showed their solidarity with us.  

At the end we would like to say that still there is a long way to go. Our people are sill suffering and still they are unable to save their lives in the cold weather of winter.  

Board of Directors of HAWCA

Acknowledgments

HAWCA’s Leadership Board would like to express warmest solidarity with all committed organizations and individual activists across the world, who are struggling for human rights and tackling the humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan.  In particular we would like to thank HAWCA’s funding partners who with their financial assistance have made it possible for HAWCA to progress towards its goals.  We are also grateful for the moral support from friends around the world whose interviews, emails, and encouraging letters kept us hopeful for a brightening and better future in Afghanistan. We are looking forward to continuing with you all hands in hand to bring an end to all injustices and violence in the world and foster a peaceful and sustainable life for women and children in Afghanistan. THANK YOU for your support!
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Overview

The year 2007 is eighth year of HAWCA’s establishment. When an organization reaches such a stage, it always have to look at its history and what the achievements as well as failures of the organization has been and so far how did the work of HAWCA affected Afghanistan and its women and children?

That is why we would like to present HAWCA's 2007 Annual Report to all donors, supporters and all those involved with HAWCA.  
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Civil society and HAWCA’s role as an NGO

The civil society in Afghanistan is also growing up gradually and is making all its efforts to emerge transformative changes, but indeed due to the reality of this context, the changes are so far gradual. For instance, Human rights organizations are trying to come under a network to express their concerns regarding the violations of human rights, the public media have started to give further opportunities for youth and even children and the private media have started to conduct open discussions and debates on certain issues such as democracy, role of civil society in rebuilding Afghanistan and other daily issues. NGOs involved in the social development field have also played an important role in raising awareness on human rights, gender equity, peace and women’s rights. It is to mention that Afghanistan is still one of the top countries in having low literacy rate, particularly in regards to women. Women headed NGOs have also continue their struggle in promoting gender equity within the legislative systems of the country.  HAWCA as a committed NGO have also played its role in defending the deprived Afghan women who have been victims of all kinds of violence or violence by powerful influential warlords in their regions. HAWCA participated in several debates discussing the importance of protecting women’s rights throughout Afghanistan.
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HAWCA plans for future

Considering the fact that HAWCA as a committed organization would likes to carry on its work in the most professional way in the future, in consultation with its leadership members as well as its staff, it developed a Strategic plan last year. This plan includes HAWCA’s particular interventions in the up coming year. While enhancing the formulation HAWCA will focus its efforts in the following areas in coming next years:
 
  • Focus on capacity building of HAWCA leadership staff and project staff
  • Working on HAWCA policy and management
  • Focusing on the New Project of Culture Centre and its management
  • Establishing women’s centers where they learn skills and learn about their rights and human rights
  • Delivering TBA training in Bamyan
  • Delivering TBA training in Samangan
  • Proposing a TBA training in Nuristan
  • Carrying out lobbying and advocacy activities
  • Right awareness and peace education among children and youths Continuation of the HAWCA program in protection and counseling
  • Planning new ideas:  Cultural centre, seeking new partnership possibilities
  • Continuing the partnership with Pangea in regards with Jamila Micro-credit Project
  • Proposing a Women Center for women in  Mazar-e-Sharif
  • Proposing three centers of peace building school for children on three different district of Kabul
 
In conclusion as it is visible, HAWCA have had a very successful year full of achievements and have done a lot of work in reaching to its goal. Meanwhile it is also worth to mention that so far HAWCA will have a long way to reach the point it can be satisfied with. In other words, the gaps are still huge internally as well as externally to fulfill the aims of the organizations. In the internal level, staff with lower capacity and leaving of professional staff has been the most significant challenge, while externally there are challenges in deferent levels such as policy level, in which there is still no voice of women in the decision making level, executive level, whereas huge gaps in achieving women’s rights due to male dominant environment as well as due to deep corruption in the governance system in place in the country. Hence, keeping into consideration the existing challenges, HAWCA will carry on its efforts to meet the challenges through contributing to the enhancement of the situation and also through focusing more on the process which facilitate capacity building of its main leadership staff.  

Education projects in Afghanistan (Literacy courses)

Most of HAWCA literacy centers such as Literacy center in Qala-e-Alimardan, Qalia Nazer in Kabul and one in Mazar-e-Sharif and one in Jalalabad and one in Farah provinces have been closed by May 2006 as it completed its durations of five years... HAWCA ran as mentioned above five literacy centers, two in Kabul, one in Mazar-e-Sharif and one in Jalalabad and one in Farah which were financed through ASDHA Spain.. In each centre 200 female students aged 14 over each year since 2002 were provided education facilities. The literacy centers were registered with MoE literacy department. MoE literacy department curriculum plus human right information were applied and by passing of time the curriculum were enriched by adding human/women/child/right, violence against women and hygienic/health information and the duration of literacy courses extended from 18 months to three years. Literacy course according MoE literacy department has 3 level or grade 1-3 and after completion of 3rd grade the beneficiaries are entitled certificate of graduation of 3rd grade and for further education the beneficiaries can attend 4th grade of public schools.  
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Women Center in Qala-e-Nazir

Qala-e-Nazir literacy center were kept running from June 2006 and due to fund shortage it was close at the end of  December 2006.. In May 2007 our new partner (ICCO) Netherland started to fund this project. This center was reopened in May 2007 and it was again closed in October 2007. In this center in addition to literacy, women were enabled to learn about their rights, human rights hygienic/health information and counseling was received by the beneficiaries. A number of 200 women and girl beneficiaries and 10 teachers were involved in this project. They were supervised by an experienced supervisor in order to improve their methods of learning. HAWCA’s education officer tried its best to provide the center with updated teaching material and informative and useful material.
 
Donor: ICCO/Kerkinectie, Netherland

Literacy classes in Samangan

HAWCA had started a new gender balanced approach to literacy education in Samangan province. With the suggestion of residents of five villages in Posht-e-Band area of Khuram-wa-Sarbagh district of Samangan province, HAWCA had established  four literacy classes for women and four for men where both were attending the classes to learn how to read and write and receive further information and awareness on human rights and women’s rights. Each male or female course had a number of 25 trainees. The project had started in September 2006 and was closed in September 2007. The project supervised by HAWCA staff based in Nowbolaq village where HAWCA also runs a school since five years.  The aim of this project was to contribute in decreasing illiteracy rate in the area and to raise awareness on human rights values in remote areas. This project had been strongly supported by the villagers and the local project staffs were coordinating their activities with the local/village councils related to NSP (National Solidarity Program).  At the end of this project, the trainees received certificates of honor for completing this course and it will act a base if they want to continue their studies further. This certificate will also help them in finding jobs especially in remote areas like Samangan, where literacy rate is very low.

As this project had been very successful and useful for the local community, HAWCA  will try its best to continue similar projects in this area or other remote areas such as Nuristan.

Donor: ASDHA, Spain (Gava local Gov, Barcelona local Gov).

Primary Education

Providing access to primary education for girls and boys in remote and marginalized areas remained as one of HAWCA priorities. This will help women and children (girls and boys) to access education and having awareness on child rights, human rights and their right to education. HAWCA supports two primary school projects in two provinces namely Nuristan and Samangan. Both projects are considered as an entry point to mobilize communities in encouraging their girls to attend school and in a later step to empower young generations of these communities through education.
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Peace Building program for Dara-i-Titeen Primary school (Nuristan)

Dara-e-Titeen Primary school is located in western Nuristan, Norgaram district in a green and mountainous valley called Titin Dara. This district is neighbor with Laghman province. The building of the school which has been built by HAWCA is being used in two shifts a day. One shift is primary school for girls and the second shift is for boys.

This year Counterpart International started to fund the project of peace and children rights training in school. The program started on 5th of May 2007. A number of 241 boys and 241 girls averagely attended the program during the three months period of this report.

The students continue their classes the same way as it started and the subjects they study (besides their school studies) are:
  • Peace Building (Is a series of books 1st to 6th Grade –produced by SDO- which includes wide range of subjects such as conflict resolution, anger management etc.)
  • Awareness on rights, i.e. what is right?
  • Awareness on Child rights in a simple language.
  • Convention of Rights of Children in a simple language.Besides teaching of peace and children rights studies, uniforms and chairs were also bought for the school this year.  

Project of this school has been funded by Counterpart International from May 2007 to December 2007.

Donor: Counterpart International

Now Bolaq Primary School (Samangan)

Now-Bolaq Primary School is one of HAWCA’s school which was basically established in refugee communities in Pakistan, its aim was to establish a school for carpet weaving children of the area. But in the year 2002 when the refugees stated to repatriate and return to their villages, the elders of the community as well as a number of family members of the students suggested HAWCA to also move the school in their village. HAWCA accepted and we are very pleased to the concerned donors who also were kind enough supporting this project inside Afghanistan.
 
The school was restarted in Now Bolaq right two months after the refugees returned to the village in 2002. But, the school building in this village was bombed during Soviet occupation and the only possible place for the school in the village was the local masque of the village. Again with support and agreement of the community leaders the school was started within the mosque of the village. However, one of the conditions of the community was to use this religious school for temporary time. Therefore, they suggested for building a school.

For the year 2003-4 HAWCA proposed the construction of the school to concerned donors and it was approved. During the year 2004 in the month of November the construction work was finished and it became ready for use for academic year 2005. Now the students are enjoying having a school building with six rooms and 6 local toilettes, drinking water and play ground.

Meanwhile the school studies were continuing during whole these years since started inside Afghanistan.
The school has grown to 7th grade in the year 2007 with total number of 280 students, and now registered with provincial educational department of MoE. Although this school had grown to 7th grade also and this year it remained till same grade and didn't move up, is that because most of the students moved Mazar-e-Sharif to continue their further studies. And there were very few students for whom a class should be managed.
 
Donor: Barcelona local government and Generalitat De Catalunya through ASDHA, Spain.

Information Technology for Youth

HAWCA’s Computer center which is a project running for the last five years, has had a year pause in its funding, but HAWCA tried its best to keep it running. This year this course was running for the whole year. The location of the center was in Kart-e-Now, a residential area in east of Kabul city. In this course, 174 students (most of them girls with little number of boys) were taught Window XP, Microsoft Office package, Corel Draw, hardware and networking. After completing this course, students were awarded with certificate of honor that will help them in finding jobs. Now these students are working in banks, governmental offices, NGOs and teaching in computer institutes.  As HAWCA is starting a new project with the name of Cultural Center, we will try our best to hire some of the employees from those students of this course who haven't found job yet.  Donor: Fons Mallorqui and Fons Catala through ASDHA, Spain. Project Budgt: Euro 43,030.00
HAWCA Peace building Project
 
HAWCA’s Peace Building Project in Qala-e-Zaman Khan, district 9 of Kabul city, is an initiative which aims to raise awareness among children about their rights; create a safe and healthy environment for children through entertainment such as plays, music etc; and provide them with further help to improve their school lessons. The project started on March 2005 and for the whole year 2005, 2006 and 2007 was running smoothly. There are 200 children aged between 7 and 14 who attend primary schools some subjects beside peace education. After school they attend peace building classes where they do different activities. The staffs of this project are trained on providing peace education, lessons on conflict resolution, and work on the Universal Deceleration of Children’s Rights. By using local material and entertaining programs, they have managed to change the project into a popular centre for children in the area, who are all very enthusiastic to attend their classes.

The local community is very supportive towards this project as it was their request that HAWCA continue this initiative for children to have a safe environment to study, play and, learn many important issues related to their future such as their basic rights and information on behavioral attitudes.

On April 2007, students celebrated students had a function in the center to celebrate Human Rights day. Two journalists from Italy had also joined in this function, which helped to have good coverage report. During the function, students raised the placards asking for the immediate release of Afghan journalist, Ajmal Naqshbandi, one of the placards was the carrying the slogan: Afghan's Life = Italian's Life.

During month of July 2007, students of the center along the help of their teachers had arranged another function celebrating the Independence Day of Afghanistan. In this function students read poems and essays; sang songs and had plays, all having the same theme of Independence Day.

In the month of September, HOPE worldwide Afghanistan had arranged a training course by the help of HAWCA in the name of "Find Your Voice". In this training the trainees were learned how to have self-confidence and good communication skills. Teachers of Peace Building Project had also attended the training. This helped them to teach their students in a better way and pass their learning from this training to their students.  

Donors: Caritas Italy and partially London Fundraising.
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Education projects in Pakistan

Scholarship for Youth Professionals

Five students were studying in this project; almost all of them finished their studies this year. Two of the students have got their degree certificate and the rest of them are waiting to get it in some time.Currently this project has been completed in Pakistan. HAWCA with help of AIDOS is reopening this project inside Afghanistan for the upcoming year.

Donor: AIDOS, Italy
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Scholarship for Afghan children in Pakistani schools

In this project we have provided the opportunity for Afghan students to study in Pakistani schools. As the level of education in Pakistani schools is better than Afghani schools but due to expensive fee and other charges, it is not affordable for most of the Afghan refugees to let their children attend these schools. This year the total number of students that were studying in this project was 10. As most of the refugees have moved inside Afghanistan, in the end academic year, May, this project was closed. The result of their education by getting knowledge of computer skill and English language a number of two students is currently teaching English language to support their families.

Donor: AIDOS, Italy
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Protection and Counseling (HAWCA’s Safe House "Khana-e-Amen")

HAWCA’s Safe House for women at risk project has been established in February 2004 in closed collaboration with MoWA, Independent Human Rights Commission (AIHRC) and  by financial support of  Foundation Belessario (an Italian Foundation) in the first year, UNHCR and Rights and Democracy for the second year and for the year 2006 UNHCR has been the only donor for HAWCA’s Safe House, while there has been in kind support from European Commission’s Kabul Office as well as some small donations of HAWCA supporters. For the year of 2007 the project financing is divided to UNHCR, ASDHA (Spain) and equipment and training section for an Italian local authority called ICS. The project started to work, while different categories of women and girls were in a real need of finding a protection. HAWCA after negotiating with different stakeholders decided to work on this very highly sensitive area and defend the rights of victims of violence.

The Safe House, although in the Afghan context it is new, but based on President Karzai’s Decree no. 104 MoWA  was given the task to look for a  safe place to protect those women at risk and female prisoners who finish their punishment time and do not have a place to stay.

HAWCA defines Safe House for women at risk as a temporary housing/ protection for those women or girls who have been abuse physically, psychological or mentally by family members, powerful communities members, warlords, officials or any,  and has not committed crime and need protection and those women who have no house to live (a temporary protection solution).

The women and girls at risk are being introduced to the safe house through MoWA and Independent Human Right Commission and UNHCR. It shoud be deteted as now we are only receiving women through MOWA

Once under protection, HAWCA consider the women and girls at risk as its project beneficiaries. The beneficiaries are provided in the safe house accommodation, three times meal a day, cloths, medical assistance, education, vocational training and awareness about their rights, civilian rights and violence against women as well as counseling on legal rights.

HAWCA as a committed women headed organization did its best in supporting women at risk. The safe house receives beneficiaries from different provinces and sometimes from Iran and Pakistan as well, HAWCA policy is to promote tolerance among the beneficiaries and tries to assist them to learn about the basic values of democracy and human rights while living in the same environment. The beneficiaries are related to different tribes, families and religious, but the management staffs of safe house are behaving them equally and empower them with the sense of cooperation with each other at all time.

Safe house for women at risk is newly implemented during the last years, after establishment of interim government in Afghanistan. The number of safe houses are growing and there are one safe house in Heart province, 2 in Kabul supported by UNHCR and one in Mazar province is established this year by CCA.  

The project implementation is carried out with collaboration of MoWA, donor organizations, UN agencies, civil society, security authorities, and legal authorities.

In the start of the project and years after there was not a mechanism for safe houses. After implementation of the project it was felt that a mechanism is needed and HAWCA raise this issue with its partners such as UNHCR and MoWA and finally HAWCA and AWSDC was given the task to draft a protocol for the safe houses and collect and enrich the protocol with the comments and then submitted to UNIFEM to work together with MoWA. It took two years to sing this protocol by MoWA and finally a CCC meeting was held in the Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission on 14/05/07 and the safe houses protocol was approved and signed between MoWA and Safe House implementing organizations.  

This year training programs (literacy course and human/women right, violence against women and hygienic/health information) for the beneficiaries were carried out. On 14/05/07 a meeting was held in MoWA and the safe houses protocol was approved and signed between MoWA and shelter implementing organizations. The purpose of this protocol was to give more legal support to safe house for its present in Afghanistan.

There other progressive activities this year: a psychologist from Medica Mondaile comes to safe house every Tuesday and works with beneficiaries individually. This psychologist also gives lectures to these beneficiaries. She also practices very light psychological exercises with beneficiaries in order to get relax and for the relief of muscle’s pain.  

A part time doctor is coming to the safe house and treats the ill beneficiaries. Besides treating the patients, the doctor gives health training to beneficiaries also like childcare, vaccination and etc.

UNHCR, UNIFEM, UNAMA, MoWA, AIHRC, and safe house implementing organizations and organizations active on human right and legal aid and local authorities are attending safe house monthly coordination and cooperation meeting in MoWA.

The project of safe house will continue for the next year as there is a highly need for safe houses in all over Afghanistan. We hope to keep it running for many years.

Donor: United Nation’s High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR – Afghanistan), ASDHA from Spain and ICS from Italy.
 

HAWCA's Cultural Center

Officially the name of this project is "Afghanistan ITW (Identity, Training, Work)", which is a cultural center where public especially women and girls can take advantage of it. This cultural center will have library, internet point, historic archive, English and computer courses, training/conference/exhibition hall. The other aim of this project is to co finance a part of safe house activities and empowerment of HAWCA management by organizing training for HAWCA managers and operators on project cycle management, micro-credit, fair trade etc

Our partners in this project are as following:

In Italy:
  • Municipality of Osnago
  • Association Chico Mendes – onlus
  • Association NABA Futurarium (New Academy of Fine Arts)
  • Association for a Free University of Women
  • CADM - House of Reception of ill-treated Women, Milan
  • CISDA – Italian Association to Support Afghan Women – onlus
  • Badaracco Foundation
  • Studio AzzurroIn 
 
Afghanistan:
  • Ministry of Women's Affairs (MoWA)
  • Embassy of Italy in Kabul
  • HAWCA

At first it had been planned that a building should be constructed for the center in the land that must be provided by the government of Afghanistan. Municipality of Kabul told HAWCA that they don't have such land in the center of the city, they can provide the land in the districts of Kabul, but because the center would be located in the remote area and it will not be easily accessible for the beneficiaries, so HAWCA didn't accepted the offer. Then another option aroused that Kabul University has also land that can be used for the center so HAWCA contacted Kabul University. Administration of KU agreed to give the land for building the center but said that they will not allow the beneficiaries to come from outside, it should be only students within university and no outsider is allowed to visit the center. The culture center must operate according to the policy of the KU as a governmental institution by not allowing any journalists and media to the center. The Gender and Women department of KU should be in the decision making committee of the culture center. Two rooms should be given for the above department in the Culture Center. As these restrictions were limiting our activities, because HAWCA's main office will be also located in the same building, so HAWCA along with its Italian partners objected this offer. At last HAWCA along with the donors and partners of this project decided to provide the building from free market because of the following reasons:
 
1-    municipality of Kabul couldn't provide us land inside the city
2-    the restrictions of Kabul University was limiting our activities
3-    the whole year had been wasting in search of the land and we were already left behind from our schedule

At the end of the year HAWCA got the building and in the next coming the project will be started.

Donors: Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Italy, ICS and other partners.  
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Jamila Micro-credit Project

Jamila Micro-credit Project is an initiative of Fondazione Pangea onlus (Pangea) registered on 20th October 2005, registration no. 108, with government of Afghanistan. Pangea Foundation has decided to focus its efforts on implementing a project to promote little domestic economics and to improve their status through micro-credit. The project targets very poor and vulnerable families, particularly women, widows, orphans, and those families living on less than two dollars a day.

Pangea selects the potential beneficiaries through local women's NGOs or directly on its own. Every local NGO chooses a lady from its own staff and nominates her as the responsible for the microfinance program inside the NGO. She will be responsible for the NGO in front of Pangea. Pangea train and supports her and follows the microfinance process of the local NGO under our supervision to implement the planned activities with beneficiaries and developing the relation of work with Pangea.

Pangea distributes micro credit to very poor and vulnerable women, selected among those who have gone to the local NGO or live near to the women center or directly selected by Pangea office. The aim is to help them to implement their economic activities and improve their domestic life conditions and their knowledge about literacy, sanitation and civic education.

A fixed amount of money is paid in form of loan to each woman to start a small business and after a fixed period of time she has to give back the loan along with 5% interest. Then the next family is selected and this money is given to this new family and also the interest goes to micro credit.

This year Pangea decided to work under the supervision of HAWCA. HAWCA as implementing partner has the responsibility for the correct implementation of the project plus its management while Pangea will provide the financial support for the running of the project.

This year Jamila Micro-credit Project gave loan to 450 families and has done the survey to select new families.

Donor: Fondazione Pangea onlus, Italy
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Sponsorship

During the year 2007 HAWCA with the help of individuals and supporters managed to sponsor several girls and boys. Each month a fixed amount of money is given to the kids in the condition that they have to go to school and score good grades in their exams. There some special cases in our sponsorship project that HAWCA with help of its foreign supporters has helped them to be operated in Europe.  
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Nadia

In the year 2006 HAWCA tried to seek possible ways for Nadia’s plastic surgery. As result thanks to our partner ASDHA, Monica Bernabe (director of ASDHA) had found a hospital and sponsoring organization in Barcelona, Spain for her treatment. Nadia traveled to Spain, Barcelona to attend a series of conferences on Violence Against Women in Afghanistan in November 2006 and she continued to stay in Barcelona for her treatment. HAWCA is supporting Nadia’s family in her absence as she is the only breadwinner of her family. This year she has been operated four times and still she needs to be operated more.  
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Qadeer

Qadeer is a young boy who was taken by HAWCA to Spain for treatment of a medical treatment. He is being sponsored for regular medical check ups and education expenses. Merce from Spain is his sponsor. HAWCA is also seeking possible ways to encourage Qadeer to learn a skill and start his own small business. This year the medical and financial support was continued for Qadeer. He had been to school the whole year and also followed English language courses.
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Nazanin

Nazanin had been to Milan, Italy, for treatment in the year 2006. After in-depth analysis of her medical case, the doctors said that Nazanin has an inflammation of the small blood vessels of her hands and this causes part of this disaster. What the doctors of Genoa Hospital (Gaslini) cannot understand is the origin of this inflammation. This inflammation is getting better, but even if the recovery is on the way is leaving her hands with a serious retraction of the skin. They said that we must wait for the complete stop of this retraction and than it will be possible to think at some operation to “rebuild” the skin of her hands. In the mean time she must continue to use the creams she was given at the Hospital and do some movements with her hands because this will help to stop the retraction.

As far as it is concerned the diagnosis of radiodhermitis this is not secure and it is been given in lack of alternatives explanations and because this type of lesions have been seen by a doctor that saw something similar in Iraq. But they cannot say anything precise about the possible source: not even if it is a matter of beta or gamma rays.

In the year 2007, Nazanin had been to Italy for three times to be treated. At the end CISDA an Italian NGO found a family with whom Nazanin will live. Now Nazanin stays in Italy until she is fully recovered, she will also continue her schooling there.
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Ayesha’s story

Ayesha as you can see from her birth year (1991),  is a child born during the heaviest fighting in the recent history of Kabul. She opened her eyes to this world, while Kabul was under very heavy rocket attacks and practically, her mother never felt safe and secure while she was pregnant. Luckily nothing has directly happened to the family, but because they were living in the centre of Kabul which was also at that time the centre of war, that affected the whole life of the newborn child. Ayesha is now growing up. She has two sisters and two brothers, she is intelligent and went to underground schools under the Taliban regime together with her sister. She is now at 10th grade, because of those classes she took secretly during the Taliban. But, over all she seems very week. There is always a light blue circles around her eyes and she also has a skin problem in her hairs, i.e. some parts of her hair falls due to depression. Her mother says that the doctor told them, it is due to the effects of some serious childhood shocks that she had. It is true, she a survival of rocket attacks. HAWCA has selected Ayesha for the sponsorship, because this probably small help encourage Ayesha psychologically that she has friends around the world who cares about her and who write her and then we expect Ayesha to respond to her sponsor and write how she is doing with her studies and life.

Ayesha was sponsored for one full year of 2007. As result she has taken extra classes of English language and computer. However she still has weaknesses in her Maths and Geography. She passed final exams at the school, but she should enter examinations for the mentioned two subjects again before start of academic year in March.

Sponsored by: Laila Sandra Roy, France.
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Mushtabah

Mushtabah is the eldest son of the family. Both his parents are working and he is going to school in morning and trying to find a job in the afternoon. He is a hard working boy, but very silent and doesn’t speak too much. His younger brother is better than him in terms of his courage and communication. Mushtabah has two brothers and only one sister. When his mother is going to school he looks after the rest of kids as there isn’t any proper service to support the working women’s children. However, now the four of them i.e. Mushtabah and his two brothers as well as his sister are going to school. Mushtabah sold kites in winter to raise money for his classes. He is very much interested to learn English and computer, but besides he is interested to learn music as well. However, due to the family economical status, learning music seems a very luxurious thing for him. On the other hand, being a child of war generation, he still has some effects of war in his mind, particularly of the Taliban time schools and also of the bombardments. During the US bombardments, one of the bombs hit their neighbor’s house, known to be a “Taliban house” he was out playing at that time, and the sound of bomb damaged his ears for many months, he could not hear properly. But now, although as Mushtabah him self says he try to forget the past, it is practically difficult for him. Thus, by keeping himself busy with studies, and music (hopefully in future) he will have a chance to forget the past.  

By the end of 2007, Mushtabah still did not succeed to get into any musical course, however he focused more on learning English and computer. He can now use computer for writing up and painting. The sponsorship funds supported Mushtaba to pay for his English and computer classes and as result now he is able to follow with the it.

Sponsored by: Laila Sandra Roy, France.
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Shabana

Shabana her mother and her only sister lives now in village in Bagrami district. She was born 15 years ago in a refugee camp in Pakistan. Her father Said Yousuf used to work as driver and later on he got a job as the Ambulance driver in a refugee camp in Peshawar (Pakistan). Shabana father was loved by all community as he was working day/night to help his community, although he was only paid for day work time. Once, while he was taking some patients to city for treatment, he had an aaccedent and due immediate brain stroke and that has taken his life right in the place. This was a shock for all the community. Shabana has two uncles and an old grandfather. Only one of his uncles has job and so he is earning money to raise his own family and support Shabana and her mother and sister. Shabana is now in 8th grade of Qala-e-Wazir Girls High School and she very much would like to continue her study. She wants to become a doctor or a nurse to help her community and she always has very good memories of her father and how everyone loved him and so she wants to work in the similar field.

The sponsorship funds enabled Shabana and her Sister Manizha to purchase their school uniform and shoes as well as books and stationeries. There are no special classes in their village where they can attend for further education, however they both are doing very well in their school studies.

In the picture you can see Shabana and Manizha with their cousin with whom they live.

Sponsored by: Monica Daigul, Switzerland.

Lobbying for Women Human Rights

HAWCA carried out its lobbying and advocacy activities during the year 2007.  As in the last years, the advocacy program included participation in the national campaigns and programs on defend of human rights and women’s rights as well as raising awareness and representing Afghan civil society in the international level.

It is worth to add that HAWCA currently holds the membership in the following local, national and regions networks:

  • Member at Afghan Women’s Network (AWN).
  • Member at Civil Society and Human Rights Network (CSHRN)
  • Member at Persian Speaking Women’s Network, which previously known as Persian Gender Network.
  • Member at Elimination of Violence Against women Group, organized by UNIFEM
  • Member at Coordination Cooperation Committee and National Shelter Network.

HAWCA is a member of two nation wide networks such as Afghan Women’s Network and Civil Society and Human Rights Network (CSHRN). Both networks are involved in lobbying and advocacy activities throughout the year and HAWCA has been a strong member to the mentioned networks as a member and contributed in the process.

It is worth the mention that this year, both the Networks had their executive board member’s elections. HAWCA’s demonstrated excellence and achievements in defense of human rights and the rights of women as well as the commitment of its members has given the chance to it to nominate itself as one of the candidates for the Board Members elections. As a result of a democratic process Ms. Orzala Ashraf has become an elected board member for AWN and CSHRN for the coming two years.

On March 1 – 4, 2007 HAWCA representative attended a consultancy meeting on ‘Women Human Right Defenders Resource Book Consultation’ as an expert in the context of Afghanistan in Jakarta, Indonesia. The aim of this consultancy meeting was to ensure that the Women Human Rights Defenders Resource Book is relevant in the context of Afghanistan.

On April 23 – 24, 2007 HAWCA representative attended a panel discussion and presented the work of HAWCA with post-released female prisoners at HAWCA Safe House to a side event of UNODC’s 16th Session in the Headquarter of UNODC, Vienna, Austria. She introduced the work of HAWCA in particular she discussed the challenges women organizations face in dealing with the protection of victims of violence against women.

On June 4-5th, 2007 HAWCA representative attended the Expert Group Meeting to Review Handbook for Law Enforcement Officials on Violence Against Women, sponsored by UNODC in Vienna, Austria. This handbook is expected to be used by the police forces in different contexts as a guide on how to deal with issues of violence against women.

On July 11th, 2007 HAWCA representative presented HAWCA’s strategic plan and its Safe House Project to the AREU’s two day seminar on Family Dynamics and Family Violence held in Kabul. The seminar was held to introduce the findings of a year research and study by AREU on the mentioned subject. HAWCA had a chance to introduce its contribution in the protection and defending of the women who suffer violence against women.

On October 21-24, 2007 HAWCA representative participated in the International Conferences of Female Police Officers from Islamic countries in Kabul. The conference brought together groups of female police officers and inspectors from different Asian Islamic countries. HAWCA representative was one of the panelists of the program and presented women NGO’s responses to Violence Against Women and the HAWCA Safe House Project to the Conference’s participants.

On 6th & 7th November, 2007 HAWCA represented the Afghan ICCO partners at the conference titled: ‘The EU & UNSCR 1325 point 8 in Brussels, Women: from target group to stakeholders in peace and security’ and attended in meetings with Dutch Parliamentarians and Foreign Affairs staff. HAWCA representative participated in different panel discussions and raised the concerns of Afghan women regarding their role in different political participation processes in the context of Afghanistan.

On 15th November, 2007 HAWCA represented Afghan Civil Society Organizations in the Nordic/Baltic conference on Peace Building in Afghanistan: How to reach the women, organized by The International Peace Research Institute of Oslo & The Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. HAWCA representative was part of the four person delegates from Afghanistan which included Minister Atmar MoE, Shukria Barakzai Afghan MP, Maryem Aslan UNIFEM Director.

On 19th & 20th November, 2007 – Presented the Safe House Project in Afghanistan as response to Violence against girls in a Conference called ‘No More Excuses – Strengthen commitment to ending violence against the girl child organised by the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and PLAN Norway.  HAWCA representative also led a discussion with the PLAN Norway youth group on the situation of girls in Afghanistan and the challenges they are facing such as access to education, health, justice and other basic services.

On December 3-6th 2007 HAWCA representative participated in the National Conference on Violence Against Women organized by MoWA and UNIFEM in Herat province. She introduced the role of women organization in different fields such as protection of victims, lobbying for the rights of women through legal reform as well as through defense lawyers in the courts.

On 28th June to 3rd July 2007 HAWCA representative attended training workshop in Advocacy Strategies and Gender Mainstreaming in Kabul by ICIMOD. HAWCA representative took the position of group leader as organizer of all activities during the workshop and help the reporter in writing the report of the workshop.

On October 1-8th 2007 HAWCA representative attended the conference of 7th Assembly of the people’s UN “All human rights for all” Perugia, Italy. From 1st to 5th and 8th to 23rd October 2007 HAWCA representative attended different public meetings and met with different municipalities and authorities and interviewing with different medias and discussed about HAWCA’s active role in empowerment of Afghan women and active participation in development process of Afghanistan. From 5th to 7th attended the Peace conference including the Marsh of 24 km Perugia to Assisi to show their active participation in peace process.
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Participating in National and International seminars and conferences

HAWCA representative participated in the following national seminars, workshops and conferences:

Finance, leadership and Organization Development Workshop organized by Afghan Women’s Network from 16th to 18th January 2007

New Accounting System of UNHCR and Partners, a training held on 4th of July 2007 in Safi Landmark Hotel for introducing new accounting system of UNHCR and discussion of key financial management element in relation with the new accounting system and programmatic issue and project cycle.

09-11/05/2007 ICCO/kerkinactie three days seminar on ICCO Training of Trainers Workshop on teaching Human Rights, a training held from 18th to 24th of February 2006 by Civil Society and Human Rights Network.

Training of Trainers a workshop on teaching the methods of teaching. Organized by CSHRN from 24th to 27th April, 2007.

Workshop on Structure of Human Rights, held on 31st of July, 2006 by CSHRN. In this workshop, all HAWCA education centre’s teachers participated.

Organizing Human Rights organizations, a seminar held on 17th – 19th July, 2007.

Capacity Building from Human Rights perspective from 10th to 12th July, 2006.

Violence, Poverty and its causes in the war-torn countries, a seminar held by AWN on 14th to 16th February.

Gender and Justice in Afghanistan, a seminar by IDLO from 15-16th May, 2007.

Social Working Methodology and assisting case workers and social workers, a four day workshop 4-7th June, 2007 organized by Medical Mondiale.

Workshop on CEDAW by AWN on the 9-11th of May, 2007.

A workshop on Child Rights Convention (CRC) by Save the Children, a two day workshop 25-26 of June, 2007.

Access to information, a workshop organized by CSHRN on the 14-16, November, 2007.

Finding ways to eliminate Violence Against Women, a conference organized by UNIFEM on the 27 June, 2007.

Study on Family Dynamics and Family Violence a methodology workshop organized by AREU on the 15th of June, 2007.

Strategic Planning for NGOs, organized by AWN on 17-18th May, 2007.
Designing and writing of proposals, organized by Action Aid from 27/09/2007 to 03/10/2007.

In addition to above mentioned seminars and workshops, HAWCA’s lobbying team has taken active part in advocacy for women and child rights. For instance HAWCA was part of the: Age discrimination deceleration by NGOs; Condemnation of Safia Ama Jan’s Assassination Deceleration; and several other decelerations related to human rights and women’s rights.