A Dollar a Day

I read a great article on BBC News online, about children and poverty in Afghanistan. The reporter talks about a young boy, Nasim, who without a father is the sole breadwinner for his family. His older brother has been unable to work since injured in the conflict that still pervades the country. Nasim works as a shoe polisher, making the US equivalent of a dollar a day. Nasim uses this money to buy food for his family, mostly bread and sugar, forgoing even simple furniture for their one room home. He also attends school – one specifically set up for street kids like himself.

Mariam, 8, copies the blackboard during class at the Aschiana school February 28, 2008 in Kabul, Afghanistan.

Mariam, 8, copies the blackboard during class at the Aschiana school February 28, 2008 in Kabul, Afghanistan. (Photo by Paula Bronstein/Getty Images AsiaPac)

Nasim, however, is still hopeful for the future and he and his classmates are full of ambition, wanting to be workers such as carpenters, translators, and drivers. It is children like Nasim who make me want to push forward in our goals. Even the smallest amount of help can push these children further toward their goals. Kids like Nasim can’t afford to buy pencils, but we can. For ten dollars, one can order a gross – 144 – of pencils. That’s a little over an hour’s worth of work at minimum wage. You can also buy ten notebooks. And for no cost at all you can gather all of the pens you have filling the drawers in your house, gathering dust.

The children of Afghanistan can barely afford to put food on their tables, and yet they still desperately need an education. An education is the only way they can get out of poverty and live out their dreams. Now, Nasim and the children like him – a large part of the population – can’t afford to buy the basic supplies they need to pursue their educations. Nor can their teachers, who often work without salaries.

But you can.

You, personally, can make a difference in someone’s life. Ask us about ways you can help children like Nasim, or read the directions listed on this blog. We, and the children of Afghanistan, are eager for your support.

Anayetah,12, does her homework while waiting for customers to polish shoes after attending classes at the Aschiana school February 28, 2008 in Kabul, Afghanistan. Aschiana schools assist thousands of children whose parents cannot afford to send them to regular public schools. There are currently eight Aschiana schools located around Kabul attending to approximately 10,000 needy students, the majority of them are girls ranging from ages seven to 17. Coming from poor households most of the children are forced to work after school, cleaning cars, polishing shoes, or collecting garbage. (February 27, 2008 - Photo by Paula Bronstein/Getty Images AsiaPac)
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