Afghanistan is ranked one of the 10 worst places in the world for girls to get an education, according to a report by the One Campaign. One bright spot is the Afghan Institute of Learning run by our project partner Dr. Sakena Yacoobi, who has been awarded the Opus Prize, the Wise Prize for Education, and is a Senior Ashoka Fellow.
With your support, teachers and administrators at the Afghan Institute for Learning kept children learning during the Covid-19 pandemic shutdown. In addition to emergency food deliveries and producing PPE, the Institute of Learning created video lessons that students could watch via phone or computer. For students who didn’t have electronic access, they made printed packets of learning materials available. They also offered tutoring for children and counseling for adults to settle family disputes and prevent domestic violence. Thank you for your support for their critical work!
Did you see this eye-opening primer in the October 22 New York Times on the outsized health risks that racism imposes on U.S. Black women before, during, and after pregnancy? One shocking statistic: “Black women in America have more than a three times higher risk of death related to pregnancy and childbirth than their white peers.” There’s good news, however: Relatively simple interventions can vastly improve outcomes for mothers and infants.
This summer you supported those interventions by funding Black Mamas ATX’s life-saving program for pregnant women and new mothers in Central Texas. Black Mamas has a 100% breastfeeding initiation—an intervention that offers multiple benefits, from improved health and boosted immunity for infants to a lower risk of postpartum depression for women. Your support helped one of Black Mamas’ Sister Doulas, Aphrica, purchase books and enroll in the first two of her four classes toward her training as a birth assistant and as an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant. Thank you for funding a gift that will keep on giving.
In the US, Covid-19 has impacted Black communities disproportionately. You funded a project that supports one vulnerable cohort of that population: Black girls aged 13 to 17 in Travis County, Texas, who have had had contact with the justice or child welfare system. “In partnership with the Travis County Juvenile Defenders office and Hearts2Heal, the Travis County Girls Squad aims to meet the urgent need of healthy connection, basic needs support, and mental wellness partnership for Black girls who need us right now,” Meme Styles founder and president of Measure. Your donation purchased monthly grocery gift cards for 10 participants and cost for a Black female psychologist for one month.