25 Years of Impact

Embarking on a journey through the last quarter-century, this timeline celebrates CW4WAfghan’s first 25 years of unwavering commitment to human rights and the advancement of education in Afghanistan. From early milestones that laid the foundation,  to transformative achievements in education and empowerment, each moment represents a step forward toward a brighter future in solidarity with Afghan women.

We invite you to explore our journey, support our present, and help shape our future in continuing to make the right to learn a reality.

  • 1996 Taliban Seize Power in Afghanistan & Canadians Take Action

    After gaining power in Kandahar (1994) and Herat (1995), the Taliban seize power in Kabul. They immediately begin imposing a series of edicts restricting women’s and girls’ freedoms, including shuttering […]

  • 1998-1999 Founding of a National Organization & First Chapters

    Canadian writer Deborah Ellis works to raise awareness of the situation in Afghanistan and creates an informal group called Women for Women in Afghanistan. Soon after, Deborah travels to Pakistan […]

  • 2000-2002 Breadwinner Books & the First Breaking Bread Dinners

    2001 The chapter network grows! Volunteer Chapters are operating in Calgary, Toronto, Waterloo, Vancouver, Montreal, Victoria, and Oakville. Deborah Ellis donates her first royalties from her award-winning novel “The Breadwinner” […]

  • 2003 Partnerships in Community Development, Literacy, & Fundraising

    Canadian Women for Women in Afghanistan (CW4WAfghan) is incorporated as a non-profit. CW4WAfghan establishes a twenty-year relationship with Physiotherapy and Rehabilitation Support for Afghanistan (PARSA). CW4WAfghan provides funding support for […]

  • 2004 First Staff in Kabul & Funding Fatema Tul Zahra School

    A new Constitution is created for Afghanistan that includes non-discrimination on the basis of sex; the right to free, public education from primary through to tertiary levels; and a 25% […]

  • 2005-2007 Chapter Network Continues to Grow & Handicraft Sales Begin

    2005 CW4WAfgahn’s chapter network continues to grow with chapters located in Vancouver, Victoria,  Calgary, Kingston, Montreal, Oakville, Ottawa, Peterborough, Regina, St. Thomas/London, Toronto, Waterloo, Winnipeg, and Whitehorse. By 2005, CW4WAfghan […]

  • 2008-2009 Kabul Office Opens, New School, & Women’s Libraries

    2008 CW4WAfghan opens its country office in Kabul.  CW4WAfghan begins the Excel-erate Teacher Training project with funding from Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA).   CW4WAfghan funds the establishment of a women’s […]

  • 2010-2011 First Country Director, Village Libraries, & Afghan Songbook Project

    2010 CW4WAfghan’s office in Kabul moves into shared office space with the Canadian Embassy’s Project Support Unit (PSU).  Murwarid Ziayee joins CW4WAfghan as the first Country Director in Afghanistan.  CW4WAfghan […]

  • 2012-2013 Shafia Fund Launch, Couples’ Literacy Classes, & Afghanistan Reads! Funding

    2012 At the initiative of the Kingston Chapter, CW4WAfghan launches the Shafia Fund scholarship program, providing financial assistance to female students pursuing higher education. To date, the Shafia Fund has […]

  • 2014-2015 Darakht-e Danesh Library Launched & Women’s Scholarships

    Photo (left): A young girl reads a new book at an International Literacy Day celebration, Kabul Country Office, 2015 In 2014, after several years of conceptualization and development, CW4WAfghan launched […]

  • 2016 Afghanistan Women’s Empowerment Program, Critical Thinking Education, & Award from Afghan Ministry of Education

    Photo (left): Takhar Literacy Class CW4WAfghan collaborates in a million-dollar project to deliver The Afghanistan Women’s Empowerment Program (AWEP), a project of the Aga Khan Foundation Canada (AKFC). This program […]

  • 2017 Library of Congress Award, Breadwinner Animated Film, & Digital Literacy Curriculum

    Photo (left): FTZ students excitedly review exam results The Afghanistan Reads! (AR!) Program is recognized as a Best Practice Honouree by the Library of Congress.  CW4WAfghan continues to further build […]

  • 2018 DDL Afghan Minority Language Development & Children’s Storybook Production

    The Darakht-e Danesh Library (DDL) interface becomes available in the Afghan minority languages of Nooristani, Uzbeki, Munji and Swaji. It is the first time content in the language of Munji […]

  • 2019-2020 Gender Equity in Teacher Training Funded by Global Affairs Canada & Learning Basket Program Launches

    Photo (left): Teacher training class, Kabul 2019 CW4WAfghan enters into a $1.65 Million contract with Global Affairs Canada to deliver The Gender Equity in Teacher Training (GETT) Project to Improve […]

  • 2021 Program Adaptation in Response to Taliban Restrictions

    By 2021, through various programs and initiatives, CW4WAfghan had trained over 10,000 teachers and established over 300 libraries and science labs.  CW4WAfghan becomes an NGO in official partnership with UNESCO […]

  • 2022-2023 Launch of Darakht-e Danesh Classroom, Remote Communication Assistance Program, & Safe Harbour Resettlement Program

    2022 The Taliban ban women from attending higher education in Afghanistan. Photo (left): CW4WAfghan’s Victoria Chapter hosts a Red Pashmina Walk to raise funds and support for the right to […]

  • 2024+ Looking Toward the Future

    For a quarter of a century, Canadian Women for Women in Afghanistan has been a beacon of hope, championing education programs for Afghan women and girls. Everyone has the right […]

As we celebrate 25 years of empowering Afghan women and girls through education and advocacy, we invite you to join us in shaping a brighter future by donating to CW4WAfghan’s impactful programs, staying connected through our newsletter, and amplifying our mission on social media. Together, we can continue making a lasting difference in the lives of those we serve. Thank you for your support!