Support Association for the Women of Afghanistan, help Afghan women, literacy, education

Vocational Training Center for Afghan Women

Organization for Promoting Afghan Women's Capabilities


English classEnglish Class Report 2013

General Information

Project Title: Vocational Training Center for Women (Literary Section)
Project Location: Afshar district, Kabul
Donor: DAK Foundation, Australia
Beneficiaries:70 women and young girls
Allocated Budget for 2012: $10,000
Allocation Period: October 2012 until September 2013
Reporting Period: November 2013


Congratulations on graduating 70 students from the English Class for the second time in the Vocational Training Center. This is the biggest achievement for the poor and forlorn girls and women of Afshar district. OPAWC would like to express its deepest thanks to our supporters for bearing humanitarian feelings and supporting their lonely sisters in Afghanistan.

General information

As OPAWC's activities mostly focus on the most needy and suffering women, we made the experience since the establishment of the Vocational Training Center for women in Kabul in 2008 that if chances are given to the women, if the situation is ready for them to learn or to work, nothing is impossible for the women, and they can show even better results than men of the society.

Literacy and English learning is the proof of our experience. Women who were just kept in the four walls of the house, who were illiterate, have now become educated and can talk in a foreign language within a short period of time. That is surprising for the Ministry of Education, as in the beginning of this course the Ministry said: "How can illiterate women learn English?" But the hard working and courageous women of our Centre gave them a positive response by completing the program of the English Course.

English classOPAWC experienced that women are mostly disturbed and worried about their dependence on male members of the family, and all violence they face is because of illiteracy and dependance on men in the financial field. For this reason OPAWC considered this problem and aimed to support these women in any field to stand on their own feet and be independent financially.

English Learning was one of the ways to help women to escape from this problem. Also it was the students' desire to attend such course since the beginning of the Vocational Training Centre. Until 2011 OPAWC's financial situation did not allow us to establish an English class. In October 2011 SAWA-Australia (SA) applied to the DAK Foundation for financial support and received approval to establish an English class, and OPAWC could finally respond positively to the women’s wish.

The establishment of the English course opened a new phase in the Centre. In developing our plan we decided to give priority to women who already participated in literacy and handicrafts classes of the Centre.

As the course started it was showered with requests from more than 500 women and girls from the Centre and also from outside. But we gave this chance to women of the Centre, and after taking a first examination we established two classes for 70 students in two shifts. After completion of one year these students graduated from this section and joined the Computer Class. OPAWC enrolled new students in the second year of the English class. These women graduated on the 28th of October 2013.

OPAWC is not sure whether it can find some money to continue the English class into 2014 This is the reason why it did not register women for new English classes yet. Day by day women come and ask for the English course, but OPAWC tells them that we are trying to secure funds. If a donor agency again supports this section, soon the class will be reopened to women.

Program objective

 The objective of this Course was to help women of the Vocational Training Center to learn a new language beside their learned skills and become familiar with some useful common communication expressions to help them find job or communicate with foreigners while selling their products. This is to support them to stand on their own feet and earn independently and feed their children.

Outcomes

The second year of the English Course was a one year program; it was highly successful. The students are able to communicate in English with each other, they are happy to learn the basic skills for the new language.

English classThe outcome of the project is positive in two fields. Firstly around 70 women and girls learned how to read and write in English and are familiar with a new language, it brought new skills and good changes in their lives. Secondly these women became good teachers at their homes and can teach their children. As attending private English classes is too expensive and they can’t afford to send them to private courses, they can teach their children at home. This is the biggest support for these women.

Result of two years of study in Computer and English Courses

Contrary to the claims of the Deputy of Literacy of the Ministry of Education that illiterate women cannot learn English and computer skills, a number of women and girls who graduated from these courses reached to a level that allows them to work in different places. They work as receptionist, teacher, shop assistant and in different places. Their lives have changed and they are happy and express their thanks to all supporters, sometimes they visit the Centre and offer their time in support.

 Student requests

 Students requested to continue the course at a higher level, but we told students that we  have a long list of students whom we promised in the beginning of the project to give them a chance after the second term, so we cannot continue the class at high level at the moment. We hope we can give a positive response to these students in the future as well.