In addition to teacher education, science labs and libraries, CW4WAfghan supports basic education in Afghanistan through the direct provision of classes for children in need. Our focus is on supporting Afghan schools to provide high quality education for girls and boys.
For example, CW4WAfghan has long funded the operation of the Fatema tul Zahra School Girls’ School, a local community school in Kabul that serves young school-age girls who attend classes in one of two shifts each day from grades 1-12. At an average cost of $300 per student, CW4WAfghan donations provide: a safe building and classrooms; trained teachers who benefit from ongoing professional development; after school program instructors; learning resources and school notebooks and pencils; fuel for heat in winter; a growing library; a modern computer lab; a playground; and a learning garden. CW4WAfghan’s quality assurance staff support the school administration and work closely with the school to improve the quality of learning.
More than 400 young girls attend the FTZ school. They are from poor and disadvantaged families, internally displaced families, and single-parent households, or those at risk due to child labour. Students cannot afford to go to public school with the costs of uniforms and books, or they are unable to travel safely outside of their community to attend other schools.
Activities and Impact
CW4WAfghan refurbished the computer lab at the Fatema tul Zahra School in Kabul, with funding support from the Canadian Embassy in Kabul. Once the lab was equipped, we developed a digital literacy curriculum for six grade levels, and trained the school’s teachers. This was a pilot and we used the experience to improve the curriculum.
We also partnered with an Afghan volunteer-led initiative, CodeKids, whereby young Afghan software developers taught coding to the girls at the FTZ School.
Both the Canadian Embassy, through Canada’s Fund for Local Initiatives (CFLI), and the Rotary Club of Kabul have provided library books and resources. Students have attended the International Literacy Day events, and they had a field trip to the Museum of Science and Technology. The school kitchen is to be updated, including a much needed water purifier thanks to the Rotary Clubs of Kabul and Germany. A successful coaching and mentoring component was introduced for FTZ teachers, where some of the experienced teachers were paired with junior or new teachers. Teachers were provided with a number of training sessions including Communicative Teaching Approaches, and Critical Thinking Workshops.