Our Director, Ron, just returned from a visit to India, Pakistan and Afghanistan, where he visited our teams there and saw them at work. In India, we have hostels for disadvantaged boys and girls, who are cared for and given an education, and a better start in life than they could normally expect. We just started work on building a Vocational Training College, so that after graduating High School, the children will be able to go on to learn skills needed to set them up in the world of work. Courses that will be on offer incude mechanics and hotel management.
In Pakistan, we have set up a school and are urgently looking for equipment for it. We also need books for teachers, including training manuals and lesson plan guides. Many of our teachers are newly qualified or even students, and they need help to provide the best education possible to their pupils. Only through education will the children be able to pull themselves out of poverty and give their community hope for the future.
In Afghanistan, our team is small and operates from home, since our offices were firebombed in July. We run a Children's Day Care Centre in Kabul, and the children there are given an education, a meal and a safe place to play. The centre is funded in part by the sale of carpets made by widows in the area, and exported for sale. This also gives the women a way of earning enough money to keep their families.
At the Day Care Centre, we have several children who are talented artists. An art teacher works with them to develop their talents and their pictures are exported to us for sale. Half the price of the painting is given to the artist, enabling them to help with their family income, and the other half is used to help with the running costs of the centre. Paintings are reasonably priced and can be viewed on our website: http://www.worldinneed.co.uk/
The Afghan winter is harsh and bitter, and many people die of hypothermia each year. Our supporters have promised a gift of warm clothing for the children and their families, which will be very welcome.