29 March 2020 - Created in Afghanistan in 1993 and operating there ever since, ACTED is building on over 27 years of commitment to provide Afghan communities with humanitarian and development assistance. Today, in the wake of an outbreak that could leave a country exhausted by 40 years of war in an even dire situation, ACTED Afghanistan mobilizes all of its teams to answer an unprecedented crisis.
ACTED’s continuous access to areas in need and ability to deliver assistance where others do not usually go have made the NGO a major aid stakeholder in Afghanistan. Thanks to this unprecedented access, ACTED can reach urban, rural and remote communities to raise awareness and spread the essential messages, as well as explaining basic hygiene and social distanciation measures.
Building on its experience, some alternative programmes are already being implemented, such as remote learning for the primary education, through mobile teaching or radio programmes. But in a country where health services are struggling, ACTED steps up to help fight against this outbreak.
ACTED Vocational Training Centers are usually used to provide a physical space, protecting the most vulnerable and giving a chance to marginalized populations to participate in educational and vocational trainings. However, as the number of COVID-19 cases is increasing more and more across the country, and since the number of masks available is largely insufficient, ACTED mobilizes its teams and its beneficiaries to produce masks to be distributed.
Through four vocational training centers, 10,000 masks have already been produced so far. ACTED aims to distribute masks to 20,000 people over the next week, while also providing awareness-raising campaigns on Covid-19 and prevention measures. These masks will be distributed mainly to shopkeepers, taxi drivers, delivery people, street cleaners, and any other street worker, to avoid the further spread of the pandemic, but also to people vulnerable to an outbreak, such as recent returned from the neighbouring Iran.
Over the next weeks, ACTED Afghanistan aims to considerably expand production in all the northern provinces so as to assist more people at this critical time. This scale-up will be facilitated through the platforms created in 58 manteqas (traditional solidarity zones) in Faryab, Balkh, Jawzjan and Samangan provinces, helping to mobilize communities, raise awareness and deliver assistance to all the communities.
In this time of Covid-19 pandemic, ACTED Afghanistan remains committed and ready to adapt to this emergency situation in order to support the most vulnerable in the country. It is our duty to act together and contribute to support the most vulnerable.