The Real Afghan Diaries: Educating Children in Afghanistan
Thursday, March 24, 2010
Ian Pounds is an American who lives with orphans in Kabul, Afghanistan, where he has volunteered as an educator for two years. These orphanages are one of a kind programs run by the Afghan Child Education and Care Organization (AFCECO). Isolated in a section of the city otherwise off limits to western workers, Pounds teaches English, drama, photography, and computer skills to 180 children. Please join us to hear about his experiences and to learn more about the struggles to educate young women in Afghanistan.
He is joined by one of the orphanage’s top students Pashtana, a 17 year old Pashtun girl who lost her father to the Taliban in 2001 which forced her and her family into a refugee camp in Pakistan. Shortly after, Pashtana was sent to AFCECO. She is one of the first generation of children to have been raised in AFCECO orphanages. In Afghanistan, one out of every twelve children have lost both of their parents. Pashtana’s story however ultimately paints a picture of hope for the future of Afghan children. Together, Ian and Pashtana will share stories about real life in Afghan orphanages, the political situation in Afghanistan, the status of Afghan women, and the experience of coming to America as part of a new Women’s Leadership Training Program.
Ian’s commitment to the education of children at the risk of his own life and Pashtana’s own struggle towards a better life show us the complexities of Afghanistan today. Please come and share in this experience of these heroic individuals.
This lecture is made possible by support from the St. John’s
Women’s and Gender Studies Program
Center for Global Development.