Supporting CEDAR’s Partner to Help the Poor Afghan Through the Winter

Phase 2 Assistance (Updated July 2022)
Food Assistance for Afghanistan in Hunger 

The Taliban takeover has been almost a year (since 7 September 2021), but the Afghans are still in dire straits. In addition to the earthquake reported in the news earlier, they still need to face armed conflicts (for example, in November 2021, some terrorists launched an attack on a hospital, killing over 25 people, with 50 injured), drought (due to the low rainfall and the long-term armed conflicts, the country performs badly in water resource management) and floods (in May 2022, 12 provinces and cities in Afghanistan were hit by storms and floods, which rampaged over 3,000 acres of farmland), COVID-19, diminishing household incomes, and skyrocketing food prices. Local families are having a tough time making ends meet. 

According to the data from our local partner (from December 2021 and January 2022), 185,287 people in Kandahar and 101,497 in Uruzgan were malnourished. The data also revealed the insufficient knowledge of local women in feeding their young children. Adding fuel to the fire, they are deprived of basic medical services in Afghanistan. Many fled from local food shortages and conflicts, making it more difficult for them to access antenatal care, nutritional supplements, and guidance on breastfeeding and infant feeding. 

In response to the local situation, CEDAR works with a local partner to:  

1) Increase the accessibility of women and children under five to basic medical services. 

2) Improve the nutrition of infants, children under five, and pregnant and breastfeeding mothers. 

 

CEDAR has allocated approximately HK$826,800 to support part of the project expenses. The whole project is expected to benefit 30,346 people in total. 

The actions of our partner are outlined below :  

1) Providing basic medical services;  

2) Improving nutrition 

3) Data Monitoring 

 

Project details:

  • Medical services
    Establish five integrated mobile health and nutrition teams (MHNTs) to provide basic medical services for local people. The main beneficiaries include newborns, children, and pregnant and postnatal mothers. In addition to basic medical services, our partner will also provide referrals, family planning consultations, psychological counselling etc.

  • Improving nutrition
    MHNTs focus on children under five and with moderate to severe acute malnutrition, as well as pregnant and breastfeeding mothers with acute malnutrition. Screening and management for malnutrition, and dispensing of ready-to-use therapeutic food (RUTF), will be provided along with education on breastfeeding, complementary feeding, and basic hygiene in infant care.

  • Data monitoring
    Our local partner will collect and monitor the nutrition level and disease prevalence among the locals. There will be regular evaluations of project progress and effectiveness. We will make sure that every beneficiary receives assistance with fairness.

Phase 1 Assistance

Afghanistan’s capital Kabul is covered by dense smog and toxic air every winter. The reason is that poor families had to do whatever they could think of to keep themselves warm. It could mean burning wasted plastic, car tires, wood, or coal.

The night-time temperature in Kabul has dropped below zero, where some highland areas are likely to drop to as low as -25 degrees Celsius. The gelid winter weather only worsens the painful life of the Afghans after the Taliban has taken over. The humanitarian situation is constantly reaching a new low.

At present, about half of Afghanistan’s population live off external aid, and about 5.5 million people are displaced throughout the country, of which 700,000 have been forced to flee their homes in 2021.

Ceaseless violence attacks, severe droughts, soaring food prices, the impact of COVID-19, and long-term poverty have pushed countless Afghans to the brink of despair. In addition, the lack of food, shelter, and warmth in the winter is putting these people’s survival into question.

About six months ago, CEDAR allocated approximately HK$195,000 to support our local partner in distributing emergency food and sanitary supplies to 320 conflict-affected poor families in Laghman Province. We maintain close contact with our partner, considering the rapidly deteriorating situation to assess their safety and rights to work, which would help us kick off humanitarian aid as soon as possible. However, after the Taliban gained power, our partner has been experiencing restrictions on capital flow. Our partner is determined to carry out relief work among local communities despite the limited capital operations. For this reason, we will allocate a total of approximately HK$909,000 to support our partner’s emergency relief. The funding includes:

  • Sponsor approximately HK$246,000 to distribute warm blankets to displaced families in Kandahar and Nangarhar provinces, helping a total of 1,125 poor families to get through the winter. Each beneficiary family will receive two blankets.
  • Grant about HK$195,000 to cover the one-month salary of 98 employees of our partner (including the project people in charge, who have been working under wages for two months now), so that they can maintain basic living standards and continue working front-line on relief and development works.
  • Intend to sponsor approximately HK$468,000 to distribute food and hygiene supplies enough for one and a half months to displaced families in Nangarhar Province, benefiting 500 poor families in total.

Despite the instability in Afghanistan, our local partner is still standing strong under our support. With our help, they are still in their positions serving the needy communities. The number of beneficiaries is estimated to be over 13,000. The local authority has approved some of the relief proposals for our effective execution. We will ensure that the relief items reach the needy as soon as possible.

There are substantial humanitarian needs in Afghanistan, and we will keep abreast of the local conditions to implement our long-term developmental scheme. In fact, our partners had already activated poverty alleviation and community development projects in Afghanistan long before the drastic change. Due to the continuous conflicts, many children were out of school. Some of them were disabled because they touched the landmines planted during the war, which is why our partners provide education to these unfortunate children. Besides, they provide livelihood development training to local people, teach them maternal and child health, improve environmental hygiene, and promote mother-tongue-based literacy education among the minority community.

We sincerely ask you to support our Afghan family through faithful prayers and offerings.  

Project Report

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