Afghanistan was suffering from a deadly food and economic crisis even before a 5.9-magnitude earthquake struck.

 Our teams are on the ground in Afghanistan, as they have been for over 40 years, to support communities and protect children's rights. Your donation today can support our emergency relief efforts and help save lives.

Help Save Children in Afghanistan

Afghan children have known nothing but conflict their entire lives. The deadly earthquake in Afghanistan's south-eastern provinces is just another blow to a country already on its knees.

Almost 10 million children in Afghanistan are going hungry every day due to a dire combination of economic collapse, the impacts of the war in Ukraine and the ongoing drought.

Save the Children has been helping in Afghanistan for over 40 years. Our resolve to help has never been stronger. Through Save the Children’s political advocacy arm – Save the Children Action Network – we are building bipartisan urge the U.S. Government to increase foreign aid funding for the countless children and families still waiting for help. 

Earthquake in Afghanistan: Latest Updates

The worst earthquake to hit Afghanistan in two decades has put children and families in Afghanistan in a dire situation. The 5.9 magnitude earthquake struck at a depth of 10km in Afghanistan's south-east in the early hours of June 22 while most people were asleep. 

Save the Children and our partners are deploying teams to the worst-hit areas to assess the damage and immediate needs of children and their families. It's estimated more than 1,000 children and adults have lost their lives, and approximately 1,500 people have been injured. However, these numbers are expected to rise as emergency teams reach remote areas. 

As our teams travel to some of the worst-hit areas in Afghanistan, we will assess the earthquake damage to better understand children's immediate needs and how we can best support them. 

We have emergency supplies – such as tarps, blankets, children's clothes, shoes and cooking utensils – being transported and then distributed. We're also well set up to provide emergency cash assistance to families, which is so important in crises like this when families have lost everything. 

The Challenges for Children in Afghanistan

There is not a single child in Afghanistan today that has not grown up amidst conflict.

Chronic conflict and political instability have strained Afghanistan throughout its modern history. Extreme natural disasters, especially droughts, have only made matters worse, thrusting the country's economy and infrastructure into ruins and its people into extreme poverty.

Afghanistan is among the worst conflict-affected countries to be a child. Tragically, millions of Afghan children are growing up in high-intensity conflict zones, forcing many families to flee. Over half of the world's refugees come from three countries – Afghanistan ranks second, at 2.7 million.

  • 1 child in 16 dies before their 5th birthday, 3 times that of the U.S.
  • 19.7 million children and adults – almost 50% of the population – are going hungry
  • 5 million children are one step away from famine
  • 27% of children are engaged in child labor, instead of learning
  • 55% of people live in poverty
Map of Afghanistan

Our Results for Children in Afghanistan

Save the Children provides health, education, child protection, nutrition and livelihood services, reaching over 1.6 million Afghans . 
Two girls kneel on the floor of a classroom in Afghanistan while smiling.

  • 376,000 children aided in crisis
  • 241,000 children educated and empowered
  • 93,000 children healthy and nourished
  • 36,000 children protected from harm
  • 187,000 children lifted from poverty

A History of Our Work for Children in Afghanistan

Thanks to your generosity, Save the Children has been a leading charity in Afghanistan since 1976, with the aim to ensure children can grow up healthy, educated and safe.

The targeting of nongovernmental organizations – such as the January 2018 attack on our office in Jalalabad – makes our work difficult and dangerous. So we’re bolstering our emergency preparedness and protection, ensuring systems are in place to keep our staff safe and continue our urgent work.

Together with local communities, government ministries and partners, we’re working to improve children’s physical and emotional health, nutrition, sanitation and hygiene, education, protection, food security and livelihoods.

We’re improving the delivery of crucial health and nutrition services to underserved communities. We’ve made great progress in leading community-based education, recognized as a key solution for out-of-school children. Protection remains central to our work, and we’re increasing the scope and quality of our programs. We reach hundreds of thousands of children through our humanitarian programs each year. And we continue to give children a voice to ensure that their rights, such as girls’ education, are guaranteed.

Here are some recent examples of our work:

A healthy start in life

  • Save the Children is training health care workers and supporting government health initiatives
  • In underserved communities, we’re supporting rural health centers and mobile health teams and raising awareness on proper health, sanitation and hygiene practices
  • To treat malnourished children, we’re operating therapeutic feeding sites and providing nutrition education
  • We recently integrated mental health support into our health and nutrition programs

The opportunity to learn

  • We’re working with the education ministry to establish community-based and accelerated classes, with the goal of returning children to school by grade 7
  • Through our community-based early childhood care and development centers, we’re supporting early cognitive development so crucial for lifelong learning
  • We’re advocating for early education, and we were instrumental in drafting the first-ever national preschool curriculum
  • We recently introduced our proven Numeracy Boost approach in multiple schools, including teacher training
  • We provided training in vision and hearing screening, as well as in adapting classrooms to better serve children with disabilities
  • We’re providing innovative information technology that allows teachers to share knowledge, experiences, challenges and best practices

Protection from harm

  • We’re working to reduce the number of children involved in harmful child labor, improving access to protective environments and supporting youth and families by offering social services and vocational training
  • We’re advocating for children’s rights and building the capacity for child protection at the government and community levels
  • Our teams are actively engaging communities in changing behaviors and attitudes so children’s rights are observed and respected
  • Through sponsorship, we collaborated with the government to develop the Child Rights in Islam handbook and engaged religious leaders to proactively promote child rights and protection
  • We welcomed the endorsement by presidential decree of the Law for the Protection of Child Rights and continue to advocate for its implementation

How to Help Children in Afghanistan

You can create change that lasts a lifetime for children in Afghanistan – in so many ways.

Donate to the Afghanistan Crisis Children's Relief Fund
Donate to help provide desperately needed relief to Afghan children and refugees.

Shop Gift Catalog
Give a meaningful gift that will help transform children’s lives and futures in Afghanistan and beyond. There’s something for everyone!

Support Afghanistan via Cryptocurrency! Thanks to PleasrDAO, Doge NFT ($DOG), all crypto donations to Save the Children will be matched up to ~$1 M USD value ($950,000 USD total amount before processing fees) between now and 12/31/2021. Challenge us to raise another $1M USD for children. Simply put ‘for Afghanistan Crisis’ in the ‘Donation notes’ field. You can also mention your NFT project, token, coin, exchange or community name to be included on our #HODLHOPE leaderboard. (For example, ‘$DOG for Afghanistan.’) Donate crypto now.

Sources: Facts and statistics have been sourced from Save the Children’s monitoring and evaluation experts, as well as our thought leadership publications, including our Global Childhood Report 2021 and Stop the War on Children 2020 report. Other sources include CIA World Factbook and BBC Country Profiles.


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