Our Stories

  • UNDP Boosts Legal Representation for Women, Children and the Poor in HeratUNDP Boosts Legal Representation for Women, Children and the Poor in HeratMay 7, 2015Fahima*, pregnant, was forced by her husband to crawl on all fours with the family’s dogs. It was just one of the ways she was abused during her one year marriage. He also beat her with sticks, yelled obscenities at her and poured boiling water on her hands.

  • Enforcing Access to Information Law Improving Government AccountabilityEnforcing Access to Information Law Improving Government AccountabilityApr 19, 2015While doing a story on maternal health in Afghanistan, journalist Mary Nabardaeen wanted to know how many women had died in childbirth at a certain hospital. Officials refused to reveal the number, saying that doing so was prohibited by the minister of public health. It was a response that the head of the Bakhter News Agency had become familiar with in her twenty years as a journalist. It was just another example of the challenges she has faced in attempting to get information from the government.

  • Women Entrepreneurs from Herat Link with Kabul-Area MarketsWomen Entrepreneurs from Herat Link with Kabul-Area MarketsFeb 25, 2015Women from across the western province of Herat are engaged in a number of entrepreneurship activities that include making handicrafts and jewelry, growing saffron and processing dry fruit such as pistachio and almond. Women entrepreneurs from Herat City, and Gozara, Injil, Karukh, Koshan and Zindajan districts of Herat province are particularly active in running and expanding their small-scale businesses.

  • Gap between Communities and Police Becoming Narrower in Herat, More Suspicious Incidents ReportedGap between Communities and Police Becoming Narrower in Herat, More Suspicious Incidents ReportedFeb 25, 2015In a country like Afghanistan, emerging from decades of conflict, people deeply feel the need for a police force that is closer to the community. Traditionally, Afghan citizens have harboured suspicion and fear towards the police dating back to the years of war. But this image is now gradually changing as the Ministry of Interior Affairs (MOIA) has rolled out a model for Community Oriented Policing with technical support and funding from the Law and Order Trust Fund, which seeks to bring communities and police closer to each other.

  • About 400 Households in a Village in Badghis Province Get Access to Drinkable WaterAbout 400 Households in a Village in Badghis Province Get Access to Drinkable WaterFeb 25, 2015In a remote part of western Badghis province where underground water is mostly salty, people in Dahane Abshar-e-Rigi village of Maqur district responded to their drinking water need by building rainwater reservoirs with US$ 125,000 funding from the National Area-Based Development Programme of UNDP and the Ministry of Rural Rehabilitation and Development.

  • Canal Repaired, No More Threat from Flood in Qala-e-Naw City of Badghis ProvinceCanal Repaired, No More Threat from Flood in Qala-e-Naw City of Badghis ProvinceFeb 25, 2015A canal that passes through Qala-e-Naw city and its eight adjacent villages in western Badghis province no longer leaks during flooding after it has been repaired with US $ 740,000 funding from the National Area-Based Development Programme, a joint rural development initiative of UNDP and the Afghan Ministry of Rural Rehabilitation and Development.

  • Newly Trained Law Students to Respond to Legal Needs in Helmand ProvinceNewly Trained Law Students to Respond to Legal Needs in Helmand ProvinceJan 29, 2015Abdullah Atal is a law student at Arakozia University in Helmand province. Though in his last year, he had yet to study key aspects of practicing law, such as how to process criminal and civil cases. That is, until he attended a training session sponsored by the United Nations Development Programme’s Justice and Human Rights in Afghanistan (JHRA) project.

  • Forest Preservation at a Remote Area in Badakhshan Province Generates Rural LivelihoodsForest Preservation at a Remote Area in Badakhshan Province Generates Rural LivelihoodsJan 29, 2015A forest that blankets a mountain along the Kishim River in Tagab district of northeastern Badakhshan province and where wild animals, rare plants and a variety of natural fruit trees inhabit has been preserved. Behind this success is Rural Green Environment Organization (RGEO), which, as a result, has been able to generate livelihood opportunities for rural communities dwelling near the forest. This organization has been engaged in protecting the natural resources in the area since 2002.

  • Leaving a Fighting Life Behind, the Ex-Fighters Enjoying Reunion with their Families and FriendsLeaving a Fighting Life Behind, the Ex-Fighters Enjoying Reunion with their Families and FriendsDec 21, 2014Since early 2013, close to 700 combatants have surrendered their weapons and reintegrated with their families and communities in eastern provinces of Kunar, Laghman, Nangarhar and Nuristan as a result of concerted efforts of a number of state agencies, including the provincial offices of the High Peace Council and Afghanistan National Security Department, with technical support from UNDP’s Afghanistan Peace and Reintegration Programme (APRP).

  • A Home-Based Embroidery Business Witnesses Twofold Increase in ProfitA Home-Based Embroidery Business Witnesses Twofold Increase in ProfitNov 20, 2014Azima Safi, 50, runs a small embroidery business in Jalalabad. She learned sewing handicrafts when she lived with her family as a refugee in Peshawar, Pakistan during the 90s. As the oldest kid in the family, she had to quit school at grade five and work for someone else making handicrafts at a low daily wage, which she spent on her siblings’ schooling. Upon returning to Afghanistan in 1998, she started up a home-based embroidery business of her own in Jalalabad, Nangarhar province.

  • A New Bridge in Garam Sair District Brings People Closer to Schools and MarketsA New Bridge in Garam Sair District Brings People Closer to Schools and MarketsNov 5, 2014More than 2400 Kuchi of Registan area in Bost district have now access to water provided by 20 wells built with support from the National Area-Based Development Programme (NABDP) and UNDP’s Afghanistan Peace and Reintegration Programme (APRP).

  • UNDP supports Initiatives to Provide Legal Aid in HelmandUNDP supports Initiatives to Provide Legal Aid in HelmandOct 12, 2014

  • Women members of the High Peace Council present to UNDP a 250,000-signature petition calling for peace Women members of the High Peace Council present to UNDP a 250,000-signature petition calling for peace Oct 12, 2014

  • Jewelry making brings hope to impoverished women in HeratJewelry making brings hope to impoverished women in HeratOct 12, 2014

  • Afghan parliamentarian Masouda Karokhi Receives the 2013 N-Peace AwardAfghan parliamentarian Masouda Karokhi Receives the 2013 N-Peace AwardOct 12, 2014

  • Wells Provide Water to a Kuchi Community in Bost DistrictWells Provide Water to a Kuchi Community in Bost DistrictOct 9, 2014More than 2400 Kuchi of Registan area in Bost district have now access to water provided by 20 wells built with support from the National Area-Based Development Programme (NABDP) and UNDP’s Afghanistan Peace and Reintegration Programme (APRP).

  • Social Good Summit Kabul Goes ViralSocial Good Summit Kabul Goes ViralSep 28, 2014UNDP Afghanistan, in partnership with the Afghanistan Centre at Kabul University, brought together on 21 September 2014 over a hundred students, civil society activists, computer programme developers and entrepreneurs for the 2014 Social Good Summit Kabul to join a global crowd on how new media and technology can contribute to the future of our planet.

  • UNDP supports improved workplace safety for Afghan policewomenUNDP supports improved workplace safety for Afghan policewomenAug 28, 2014

  • Religious Inter-school Competition Inspires Young LeadersReligious Inter-school Competition Inspires Young LeadersMay 22, 2014

  • Future officers buoyed by post-elections praise for policeFuture officers buoyed by post-elections praise for policeMay 15, 2014Afghanistan’s national police force virtually disappeared as a legacy of decades of conflict. Hikmatullah Stanikzai, 26, and Safiullah Stanikzai, 25, are part of a new generation at the Afghan National Police (ANP), determined to rebuild a renewed police force capable of protecting the rights of citizens and promoting national unity among Afghans.

  • Afghan youth votes in historic election Afghan youth votes in historic election Apr 8, 2014

  • Local decision-making improves women’s lives in AfghanistanLocal decision-making improves women’s lives in AfghanistanMar 12, 2014In the village of Jukna in Badghis Province, Gulsatan recalls how in earlier days women had to walk four kilometres daily simply to collect drinking water for their families. The 45-year-old widow, a mother of six, is relieved those days are now past. ”They collected water from uncovered reservoirs which were exposed to impurities. Women were constantly at risk of bacterial and parasitic infections, and their children risked diarrhoeal disease,” she says. This is a common problem across this remote, mountainous province in western Afghanistan. Potable water is scarce, and often brackish or contaminated.

  • Afghanistan’s first female district police chief: Colonel Jamila BayazAfghanistan’s first female district police chief: Colonel Jamila BayazMar 11, 2014She was supposed to be an engineer. But Jamila Bayaz lasted a year studying engineering at Kabul University before finally convincing her family to let her join the police force.

  • Code of Conduct underpins modern policing in AfghanistanCode of Conduct underpins modern policing in AfghanistanFeb 25, 2014Afghanistan’s national police force virtually disappeared as a legacy of decades of conflict. Hikmatullah Stanikzai, 26, and Safiullah Stanikzai, 25, are part of a new generation at the Afghan National Police (ANP), determined to rebuild a renewed police force capable of protecting the rights of citizens and promoting national unity among Afghans.

  • Ushering in a ‘Green’ Bags Culture, Saying No to Plastic Glut in AfghanistanUshering in a ‘Green’ Bags Culture, Saying No to Plastic Glut in AfghanistanNov 7, 2013Eleven-year-old Mohamed Nasim, who is in sixth grade, wakes up at 5:30 every morning to take computer lessons in a makeshift classroom here in Borghaso village, Bamyan Province, northwest of Kabul. He draws a house in Microsoft Paint, colors it, and types his name in the corner as his young teacher watches over his shoulders.

  • Trading Guns for Tube-Wells, Sowing Seeds of Lasting PeaceTrading Guns for Tube-Wells, Sowing Seeds of Lasting PeaceOct 14, 2013Mohammad Akbar (name changed), 47, a former combatant from a village in one of the northern provinces of Afghanistan, turned in his weapons, along with those of his ten men to the Afghanistan Peace and Reintegration Programme (APRP).

  • Enabling Responsive Governance, Cutting Time in Service DeliveryEnabling Responsive Governance, Cutting Time in Service DeliveryOct 10, 2013Mazar-e-Sharif: Marzia, resident of Baba Kambar area in the city of Mazar-e-Sharif, found her husband disappear after the floods. She was left to fend for herself and her three daughters. Marziya approached the Citizen Service Centre (CSC) located in the Provincial Governor’s Office, with her grievance.

  • Building Peace through Community InvolvementBuilding Peace through Community InvolvementOct 9, 2013In Afghanistan, a UNDP programme helps communities come together in peace to develop and prosper. In a remote, rugged province in eastern Afghanistan, the raging waters from the surrounding mountains have often flooded the 8000 homes that line the local river’s path.

  • Women Learn Small Business Skills, Look To Future with HopeWomen Learn Small Business Skills, Look To Future with HopeOct 9, 2013Aliabad, Mazar-e-Sharif: Five days in a week, Laila, a single mom of five children including an 18-year-old daughter, walks to the Food Processing Center in Aliabad village just outside Mazar city, learning the finer aspects of basic business development.

  • Portrait of a young man as a civic educatorPortrait of a young man as a civic educatorOct 9, 2013Mazar-e-Sharif: A class of 130 female students at the Mawlana Institute of Health Sciences in downtown Mazar, listen in rapt attention as Abdullah Ahmadi (name changed), 25, a civic educator and his team explains the finer details of the on-going voter registration process to the young students: the essential documentation that they need to bring to the registration centre to establish their legal date of birth and their identification.

  • Afghan police force recruits women to fight crime and stigmaAfghan police force recruits women to fight crime and stigmaOct 6, 2013It was four years ago that Captain Zohra Daulatzia joined the Afghan National Police. But the mother of two girls still gets excited about that momentous day in her life when she achieved one of her life’s greatest ambitions.

  • Bringing the police closer to the peopleBringing the police closer to the peopleOct 6, 2013 Colonel Noor Aqa Ibrahimkhail, the district Chief of Police for Farza, located 45 kilometres north of Kabul, is a veteran officer who has experienced many brushes with violence and unrest throughout his career. But compared to his previous postings, he says, Farza is a haven of peace and tranquility.

  • Lighting up the Homes and Lives of ThousandsLighting up the Homes and Lives of ThousandsOct 1, 2013Eleven-year-old Mohamed Nasim, who is in sixth grade, wakes up at 5:30 every morning to take computer lessons in a makeshift classroom here in Borghaso village, Bamyan Province, northwest of Kabul. He draws a house in Microsoft Paint, colors it, and types his name in the corner as his young teacher watches over his shoulders.

  • Building Skills for Afghan Policewomen to Lead Change and Restore Public TrustBuilding Skills for Afghan Policewomen to Lead Change and Restore Public TrustSep 17, 2013One of the top ten priorities of the Ministry of Interior (MoI) is to promote gender equity and women as role models of change in the Afghan National Police (ANP). UNDP’s Law and Order Trust Fund for Afghanistan (LOFTA) is supporting the MoI in training policewomen in leadership and management skills at the Kabul Police Academy.

  • Mushroom Cultivation Training In India Opens New Vistas for Afghan FarmersMushroom Cultivation Training In India Opens New Vistas for Afghan FarmersAug 11, 2013Kabul, Afghanistan: Sherpur, a tony neighborhood in the heart of Kabul city and a busy urban sprawl is the most unlikely place to find a vegetable farm. In one of the obscure lanes here surrounded by plush apartment blocks that are home to a gaggle of foreigners, Haji Nisar Ahmad runs a mushroom research and cultivation centre. “Mushrooms can be grown anywhere, from a car-park to an attic, why even a goat shed would do just fine”, Nisar says with a chuckle.

  • Herat Women Get Legal Help to Fight Desertion and Domestic ViolenceHerat Women Get Legal Help to Fight Desertion and Domestic ViolenceJul 22, 2013Herat, November 2011: Fatima (name changed), resident of Injil on the outskirts of Herat city in western Afghanistan, was married to her first cousin Sultan, at age 15. Unable to cope with the daily physical violence of her husband who also forbade her from attending school, and daily arguments with her mother-in-law, she ran away to her parent’s home. It has been seven months since Fatima left her husband’s home and her condition is exacerbated by the fact she is in an advanced stage of pregnancy.

  • Newly-married and pregnant Amena took the bold step of leaving her violent husbandNewly-married and pregnant Amena took the bold step of leaving her violent husbandJul 22, 2013Newly-married and pregnant Amena recently took the bold step of leaving her violent husband. She is among the millions of Afghan women for whom life has improved over the past decade. Today, more women are able to access services, like legal aid, participate in decision-making, and more girls are enrolled in school than a decade ago.

  • Local Democracy and Development Go Hand-in-HandLocal Democracy and Development Go Hand-in-HandJul 22, 2013Mahmud-i-Raqi, Kapisa Province—Mushtari, a 42-year-old high school graduate and secretary of the District Development Assembly of Mahmudi-Raqi district, some 80 kilometres north of Kabul, is presenting to fellow Assembly members a project to build a primary school for girls.

  • Government Turns to Merit-Based RecruitmentGovernment Turns to Merit-Based RecruitmentJul 19, 2013Sayra Shakib Sadat was a young female school student from an illiterate family, living in an isolated village in northern Afghanistan, when fighting broke out among political leaders and the mujahidin in the early 1980s.

  • Environmental Councils Changing Face of Development in Proviincial CommunitiesEnvironmental Councils Changing Face of Development in Proviincial CommunitiesJun 18, 2013Char-i-Kar, Parwar Province: Standing at the edge of Joe-e-Projey canal in the northern town of Char-i-Kar, Mohammad Tahir, a car mechanic, rues the fate of children who drink water from the local canal. “This canal has snuffed out many, many young lives. It is a bed of dirt and disease,” he says sadly, with moist eyes.

Results in Focus
UNDP Afghanistan 2013 Annual Report

During 2013, UNDP Afghanistan remained committed to maintaining a close working relationship with Afghanistan’s government and people. It reorganised its work around the areas of inclusive and legitimate politics; sub-national governance and development; rule of law; and the cross-cutting areas of gender, capacity development, and poverty and the environment. In this context, projects were implemented and results achieved in the areas of peacebuilding, rule of law, democratic governance, poverty reduction and livelihoods, and managing resources for sustainability and resilience. For more information, please download the full report. English PDF 

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