Wakhan Initiative for Literacy, Education & Development (WILED)
The Wakhan Corridor is a stunning and fabled area in Afghanistan, the "arm" on the map of Afghanistan that reaches Eastwards into China. Although hard to access, it has long attracted adventure seekers, drawn to its dramatic landscapes. The Wakhi people are traditionally nomadic, and are known for their unique culture and lifestyle. They have been called the people who live on the roof of the world, as well as the prisoners of the Himalayas.
This project will provide literacy education for 240 people in the Wakhan Corridor of Badakhshan province, in six different villages. Each literacy class will receive a library, accessible to all literacy students, their families, and local community members. Twelve teachers will be trained in literacy pedagogy and adult education approaches, and will also receive ongoing coaching in literacy education, librarianship and reading promotion. All 240 literacy students will benefit from life skills education covering topics such as first aid, nutrition, maternal health and rights, and more.
Activities & Impact
Responding to a request from local activists to improve access to education in this remote part of Badakhshan province, the Business for Better Society approached CW4WAfghan, and we began to assess needs in the area and look at how we could help. Thus was born a project with the two-fold aim of enabling:
- A more educated population in Wakhan with enhanced quality of life, and
- Improved local capacity for managing and delivering quality learning and teaching
To achieve these goals, we brought the Afghanistan Reads! program to the Wakhan, to provide basic literacy classes, train teachers, and deliver life skills education. Literacy teachers were recruited and trained in autumn 2018, teachers’ kits were prepared and distributed and libraries ordered for the literacy classes. We are now working to establish the classes in the target villages.
Eventually, it is hoped that the next phase of work will support improving children's access to education beyond primary school, which will be better supported thanks to the foundational literacy education delivered during the first phase of the project. The local implementing partner is Saleh, a well regarded NGO founded in Badakhshan province. This project is made possible thanks to funding provided by the Business for Better Society and its generous partner donors.