Children live in fear of explosives, gun violence and the sound of attack helicopters on their way to and at school, and also when they go to the market, or simply while playing outside with friends.
In Afghanistan, the poverty rate has risen from 36% in 2012 to 55% in 2019 and approximately two million people lack reliable and consistent access to food. Last week, the world recognized the importance of addressing issues of poverty and hunger through the observance of International Day for Disaster Risk Reduction, International Day of Rural Women, World Food Day, and the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty.
“We could never talk about attending school or getting an education with my father since he was very strict about it and he believed that girls should not study” recalled Nayima.
Rana is ten years old and studies in the first grade at the CBE class in Daman district of Kandahar province.
Mahjera, now 17 years old was forced to enter into early marriage three years ago. As a result, she had to drop out of school. She comes from a poor and traditional family. She is living in a very remote area of Kabul with her husband and in laws. Prior to her marriage, Mahjera was at 8th grade and earned the highest scores in her class and was very ambitious.
For children in Afghanistan, the war has exacted a heavy toll of suffering and continues to pose a number of profound threats. Prolonged conflict exposes children to toxic levels of stress, affects their access to education and health facilities and exposes them to extreme violence. War has become so normal that children risk death or injury every day just going about their daily lives, like walking to school, playing with friends outside or going to the market. A comprehensive survey by Save the Children of nearly 700 parents and children across four conflict-affected provinces of Afghanistan paints a stark picture: children are increasingly too scared to go outside. For a great majority, their journeys to and from school are full of fear.