Since 1976, Save the Children has been working steadfastly to support the advancement of gender equality in Afghanistan. Sadly, today, due to escalating conflict and a rising hunger crisis, millions of women and girls in Afghanistan are cut off from aid supplies, out of school and without access to basic services.

Since the Taliban gained control of Afghanistan on August 15, 2021, two babies have been born every minute. But with the country’s health care system on the brink of collapse, hundreds of thousands of infants and new and expectant mothers face limited access to medical care.

In the face of conflict and poverty, families may arrange marriages for girls, believing marriage will protect their daughters from violence, as well ease financial burdens on the family. Families in Afghanistan have also been forced to send their daughters out to work.

Four women and girls in Afghanistan describe the impact of conflict.

With the recent escalation in conflict in Afghanistan, children's lack of access to education has worsened. COVID-19 robbed girls of more than 20% of their expected lifetime education  – girls like Damsa*.

“I love my class and classmates," said Damsa. "A month ago, while I was at home due to security, our class was closed. I cried all day because I wanted to go to the class, but my parents helped me and taught me at home.

"I was not feeling good, but after a while, (Save the Children’s community-based education) program reopened. I was happy and couldn’t sleep the whole night because I couldn’t wait to meet my teacher and classmates. I want to be a doctor in the future to help my people.”

Save the Children is working across a number of programs and areas to enable girls’ access to learning.

Read the full article about women and girls in Afghanistan at Save the Children.