NEWS

NEW VIDEO: Nooristan Foundation Supports Rule of Law and Women’s Rights in Afghanistan

Nooristan Foundation Supports Rule of Law and Women’s Rights in Afghanistan through Global Rights Legal Aid Program


Nooristan Foundation Featured in The Washington Diplomat

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Nooristan Foundation featured in Washington Diplomat. The article covers projects the Foundation is working on in Afghanistan, the recent fundraiser in Washington D.C., and other facts about how the Foundation was started, and who is involved. READ IT HERE: http://www.washdiplomat.com/PouchArticle/cms/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=143


NEW VIDEO: Nooristan Foundation Helps Women Go From Poverty to Business Owners


Letter from Nooristan Foundation’s President

Dear Friends of Nooristan Foundation,

This year we are celebrating our fifth anniversary of our yearly ‘Evening of Hope’ Benefits and I am happy to report that our programs are doing well.

The primary school for 75 children in the mountains of Nooristan is now completely built. To improve the quality of instruction, we sent seven teachers to Kabul to receive professional training. The near total lack of schools in this part of Afghanistan underscores the importance of our work.

The literacy classes and professional training for women in the outskirts of Kabul are making real progress. Eleven months ago, we started with 20 widows. Since then, the program has gradually increased to 45 participants. Women who heard of our training almost implored us to join the classes. To be frank, I have been surprised to see how quickly they have moved ahead. They can now write simple paragraphs and handle basic arithmetic. They have similarly made good progress in learning gardening, sewing, and weaving. In spite of their hard and demanding lives, they make the effort to attend the classes. One by one, each woman is gradually changing her community. I have seen how much hope and commitment they have invested in the program. They now know that they can move beyond their narrow traditional roles.

This year, we have started working with Global Rights, a human rights NGO, deeply committed to increasing access to the justice system for the most vulnerable elements of Afghan society. We have been participating in their Legal Rights program that primarily helps women and children. In the first six months of 2013, the program provided advice to 1009 individuals and legal representation in 184 court cases.

When I think about what we have accomplished, even if it is modest, I am proud that we have been able to advance the cause of women and children. I think we have made a real difference and can continue to do so. Please join us on Thursday, October 24th and do speak about our work to your friends.

Thanks to the generosity of several artists we will have a live auction of their art work: a striking sculpture by Elizabeth Freire, whose works are exhibited in Brazilian museums and private collections in the US, a lovely botanical by Mary Page Hickey, who won the Garden Club of America’s horticultural arts award, a beautiful drawing by Charles Ritchie, whose works are found in the National Gallery of Art, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, etc., and a charming view of the Potomac by well-known Washington artist Jean Schwartz.

Thank you so much for your confidence in our work,

Marie Kux
President


Leonie Industries Donates $5000 to Nooristan Foundation

Leonie Industries has kindly donated $5,000 to Nooristan Foundation as a Bronze Sponsor of this year’s “Evening of Hope” Benefit.  Leonie is a leading provider of management consultants, analysts and performance measurement specialists to U.S. Government organizations.

On behalf of our Board Members, volunteers and the people of Afghanistan, Nooristan Foundation sincerely thanks Leonie Industries for their continued support and generosity.

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2013 Fall Soiree: An Evening of Hope to Benefit Women and Children of Afghanistan

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July 2012: Nooristan Foundation Featured in Washington Diplomat

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June 2012: DC-Based Nooristan Foundation Supports & Empowers Afghan Women Through Education Programs

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Mainstream news coverage of Afghanistan tends to be discouraging, especially in the way of gender equality, but with the help of the Nooristan Foundation, the future of Afghan women is not as bleak as it may appear.

Read article here: http://askmissa.com/2012/06/20/dc-based-nooristan-foundation-supports-and-empowers-afghan-women-through-education-programs/


June 2012: The Georgetowner “Spirit of Nooristan”

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Newly elected French President François Hollande was needed at the G-8 Summit at Camp David so Ambassador Delattre could not be present at his residence on May 18 to welcome supporters of Nooristan’s “Evening of Hope” on May 18. However, guests were fortunate to hear insider remarks by special guest Madame Christine Lagarde, Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund; Marc Grossman, U.S. Special Envoy to Afghanistan and Nooristan Foundation President Marie Kux. Against daunting odds, the Nooristan Foundation is many teaching Afghan women to read and write, while instilling them with an entrepreneurial spirit to help take control of their household resources.

See article here: http://www.georgetowner.com/articles/2012/may/30/spirit-nooristan/ 


May 2012: Pictures from 2012 “Evening of Hope” Posted

Exclusive pictures from Nooristan Foundation’s 2012 “Evening of Hope to Benefit Women & Children of Afghanistan” has been posted on Nooristan Foundation’s new Facebook fan page.  Pictures of IMF Director General Madame Christine Lagarde (guest of honor), Congressman Ed Royce, Marc Grossman (U.S. Special Envoy to Afghanistan), Nooristan Foundation President Marie Kux, Ambassador Dennis Kux, Mrs. Eklil Hakimi (Embassy of Afghanistan) and many other distinguished guests are now available for viewing.

To view the pictures, please visit the following link, click “Like” and click on the “2012 Evening of Hope” album. 

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Nooristan-Foundation-Making-Afghanistans-Future-Brighter/309025859174153

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May 2012: Madame Christine Lagarde Guest of Honor at Benefit at the French Embassy

MADAME CHRISTINE LAGARDE, IMF DIRECTOR GENERAL, WILL ATTEND AS GUEST OF HONOR

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May 2012: Letter from President: Update on Education Projects

Dear Friends,

After our report on the Baghe Daoud refugee camp women’s program here is a report about our primary school in the province of Nooristan and the women teacher training program for the Mirwais school in Kandahar.

Thank you for your help,

Marie Kux
President


Nooristan Foundation Education Programs:

Education being key for the development of Afghanistan, we decided to make it one of our priorities.  We have been very fortunate to benefit from the help and experience of Mrs Sakeena Yacoobi.  Since 1995, she has worked at expanding education for Afghan women. She created the Afghan Institute of Learning (AIL) in Kabul which has trained more than 16,000 women teachers.  In addition to professional teaching skills, the AIL program includes leadership, human rights and health courses.  During Taliban rule, Mrs. Yacoobi courageously organized a “Home School Program” which permitted some 3,000 girls to continue their education through a system of underground schools.  Mrs. Yaccobi has received numerous international awards and in 2005 was among a group of women nominated to jointly receive the Nobel Peace Prize.  Last year, when my husband and I had the privilege to meet Mrs. Yacoobi in Kabul, we were struck by her passion for teaching and how much she cares for each student, each problem. She strongly encouraged us to continue our efforts, saying, “If you really want to make changes, you must work at them.”

Beginning in 2009, we focused on the remote mountainous province of Nooristan, where there are very few schools, and decided to establish a primary school for 70 children in rented quarters in the village of Pasigam.  The village “shura” (council) agreed to provide land and labor to construct a school building.  In turn, the Nooristan Foundation agreed to provide the building material and to cover 90% of the school’s operating costs.  In 2011, we arranged for seven teachers from the school to go to Kabul for intensive professional training under Mrs. Yacoobi’s supervision.  We paid for transportation, lodging and other expenses.  When the teachers returned to the village, the community greatly valued their newly acquired experience.  For a time during this past year, we lost contact with the school because of the Taliban’s return to the area, but we have just learned that the school is again functioning normally.  We are hoping that construction of the new building can be completed by the end of 2012. 

This summer, we started another program, this time in Kandahar at the Mirwais girls school.  Kandahar is a Pushtun populated city where women have been confined to a traditional and restricted role in society.  Still, even though the Taliban made it their de facto capital, there has been a growing demand for more education for girls.  In 2008, the Taliban attacked the Mirwais school to discourage girls’ education, disfiguring a number of teachers and students by throwing acid in their faces.  Despite the attack, the numbers of students has actually increased since then, underscoring the desire for education.  The teachers at Mirwais, however, lack professional training and many have not completed a high school education.  To address this problem, we arranged for 30 women teachers to attend training classes at Mrs. Yacoobi’s center in Kabul. 

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May 2012: Miss A Features Nooristan Foundation On Its Website

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Ask Miss A, one of the largest and fastest growing online destinations for women that covers the intersection of charity and style in 21 major U.S. cities, recently featured information about “An Evening of Hope”.

READ IT HERE: http://askmissa.com/2012/05/11/evening-of-hope-to-benefit-afghan-women-at-french-ambassadors-residence/


May 2012: IMFFA Features “Evening of Hope” Info in Newsletter

The IMF Family Association, featured information about the Spring 2012 “Evening of Hope” event in its May 2012 newsletter.

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April 2012: New Program - Teacher Training for Kandahar Girls School

Nooristan Foundation believes that education is the foundation for economic development and progress in Afghanistan. Since teachers are the conduits of education, training them is one of the most effective ways to build peace and stability

For decades, Afghanistan had a strong cadre of talented teachers and the country’s universities were magnets for education in Central Asia. Even though the pool of trained teachers was drained after many years of conflict, since 2002 increasing numbers of schools and learning centers are being re-opened or established. Of particular importance is the fact that there continues to be significant progress in the number of girls and women returning to school.

Nooristan Foundation, through partnership with the Afghan Institute of Learning (AIL), is supporting the training for several teachers from Kandahar province in 2012. The training is designed to provide teachers with new insights into the possibilities for curriculum development and approaches to help guide their students to further their skills and potential.

Since Nooristan Foundation believes in leveraging resources, it has selected AIL to implement the training and will send several teachers from Kandahar to Kabul to attend AIL’s program. AIL is headed by award-winning humanitarian activist Sakeena Yaquoubi, whose organization has provided teacher training programs in Afghanistan and for refugee women in Pakistan since 1996. AIL has refined its program to meet the unique needs of Afghan teachers and continues to add new material and approaches to their curriculum.

Women in Kandahar were greatly affected under the Taliban regime and are eager to learn and to teach new skills. The teachers who will participate in the AIL program will go back to Kandahar and use their knowledge to train other teachers using the materials they receive from AIL. This “train the trainer” approach will help to multiply the effort to share knowledge and will encourage other teachers to pursue further training. It will also help to improve the educational experience of young girls in their classrooms and provide them with role models in their communities.

Nooristan Foundation will continue to seek funds and support from its generous donors to provide additional critical teacher training programs in other areas of Afghanistan to help move the country towards greater stability. It is our belief that education will promote the empowerment of women, who are the majority of teachers in the country and who guide the next generation of children towards a better future.


Jan. 2012: Letter from Nooristan Foundation President - 2011 Update & Progress

Dear Friends:

I want to thank you for supporting the Nooristan Foundation and to update you on what we have been doing during 2011. I know the news from Afghanistan tends to paint a bleak picture, mainly oriented toward the fighting and the country’s internal problems. Happily, all is not bleak.  Progress in a country savaged by thirty years of war cannot be spectacular, but it is real if under-reported. Since 2001, there are eight times as many children attending school and a third are girls. There is much improved health care. There are many more miles of paved road; and even some industry. We should keep these positive developments in mind and not just dwell on the negatives. The Nooristan Foundation, in its modest way, is contributing to Afghanistan’s progress.

In the refugee camp at Bagh-e-Daoud, the women, the older girls and the children that we have been helping the past three years have, thanks to your support, come a long way from the despair I felt when I visited there in 2007. Initially, we distributed blankets, plastic sheeting, lentils, and fuel to tide the families through the harsh winter. More recently, we established literacy classes for more than 100 women and older girls and enabled 70 children to attend school, providing uniforms and school bags. After learning to read and write, the women asked us to help them acquire skills needed to earn a living for their families, freeing them from poverty. When I was back in Bagh-e-Daoud this January, the women were so proud of their achievements. We are now teaching them job skills such as sewing, poultry raising and carpentry.We will next help them to market the products that they are producing. Since they have become literate, the women feel empowered. Hope has replaced despair. They know that there are families in America who care for them, and this means a lot. I invite you to view the new video and picture gallery on our website to see the progress that has been made.

Because education is so important for the future of Afghanistan, we have decided to support a new program in Kandahar which will train 30 women to become teachers. Only 15% of teachers in Kandahar have had any professional training. Mrs. Sakeena Yacoobi, a Nobel prize nominee for her work in education for women, is supervising this program. Our small village school in Nooristan Province is experiencing some problems due to the substantial Taliban presence there. For the moment, we have had to put this project on hold. We are, nevertheless, pleased that we were able to provide professional training for 7 teachers from Nooristan this March. We also are continuing to explore possibility of establishing a midwife training program for village women from Logar Province.

As we look to Afghanistan’s future, it is so important that we Americans continue to show our support for Afghan women and children. Small private assistance programs, like those of the Nooristan Foundation, reach people in a meaningful way. We are deeply grateful for all your generous help and do hope that you will continue your support.

GREAT NEWS: The French Embassy has kindly agreed to help us once more by hosting our “Evening of Hope for Afghanistan” on May 18, 2012. Save the date!!

Thank you kindly,

Marie Kux
President


2010 Nooristan Foundation Progress

Dear Friends:

We are happy to report that the Nooristan Foundation has been making good progress in implementing its three projects which focus on women and children in rural areas. Indeed, despite all the problems Afghanistan faces, it has been moving forward in a number of areas, especially in providing better educational opportunities and health care services. 

• New Beginnings: Our efforts to help the 81 families in the Baghe Daoud refugee camp have advanced from providing emergency winter aid in 2008 (blankets, food, etc.) to establishing literacy classes for 57 women; another 55 women are very eager to enroll. They should be able to read and write in a year. We have also arranged for 56 children to attend a government school. We provided school uniforms, school bags and 286 bicycles, permitting children to cycle to school and giving the families greater mobility. Working with our local partner, we now plan to teach the women job skills to enable them to earn a living for their families rather than depend on handouts. It is well established that when women are educated the family and community benefit. Attitudes have changed dramatically since we visited them in 2007. Then, the refugees were desperate, talking of suicide and joining the Taliban. Today, they have hope for a better future.

• Midwife Training: We have now completed a second cycle of refresher training for 80 midwives in Takhar province, working with the Afghan Midwives Association. Given the dramatically high maternal mortality rate in Afghanistan (1600 deaths for every 100,000 births) midwife training has been one of our priorities. In a post-training survey that we conducted, many women said that because of all the suffering and dying they had witnessed their becoming midwives was “my country necessity” (sic). The midwives found their role in society both “useful and respected.” In Takhar province, since the training began, there has been a drop in deaths during childbirth.

• Nooristan Mountain School: Last year, in Pasigam village, we launched a primary school for 70 girls and boys using rented quarters. We are now working with our local partner and the village council to build a school which will also serve as a community center. As there is no electricity, we are equipping the building with solar panels. In line with Greg Mortenson’s philosophy, the village council is providing the land and labor for the project. We are also arranging a training program for the teachers in Kabul.

In order to continue and hopefully expand our projects, we need your help. At this time of giving and sharing, we do hope that you will once again support our efforts. You can do so by donating to the Nooristan Foundation (Bank of America Account: 0041-2658-5667 or by credit card through our website (http://www.nooristanfoundation.org/index.php/nor_support/donate/). Donations are tax deductible in accordance with the Internal Revenue Code.

I will be visiting Afghanistan in late January and will report on my impressions.  Again our heartfelt gratitude for your help and moral support,


Marie Kux  
President


Nov. 2010: Nina McLemore Hosts Nooristan Foundation

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Georgetowner Nina McLemore threw open her doors on Oct. 20 to host a fashion show and sale of her latest collection of quality clothing designed for today’s multi-faceted women to benefit the Nooristan Foundation. Nooristan is a non-profit providing humanitarian, medical and educational support for rural areas in Afghanistan. Projects include livelihood assistance and literacy for 90 families in a refugee camp outside Kabul, training midwives in Takhar province and establishing a village school in Nooristan. Nina sells primarily through independent consultants holding private trunk shows. Better specialty locations and eight recently established permanent eponymous stores showcase her wearable and travelable fashions.

http://www.georgetowner.com/articles/2010/nov/03/nina-mclemore-hosts-nooristan-foundation/


Dec. 2009: Nooristan Foundation mentioned on CBS News Segment Featuring Mariam Atash Nawabi

Nooristan Foundation is mentioned in a CBS News segment featuring one of the Foundation’s VPs Mariam Nawabi:


Watch CBS News Videos Online


Dec. 2009: Nooristan Foundation Featured In New Book “Help The Cause in Afghanistan”

Nooristan Foundation is highlighted in Jim Hake’s new book “101 Ways To Help the Cause in Afghanistan”.  The book, published in December 2009, provides 101 ways one can make a difference in Afghanistan.

“Help the Cause offers ways to directly assist the Afghan people and reduce conflict and hostility. We all seek an Afghanistan that is peaceful, tolerant and free. This book shows how you can help achieve that goal.” —Peter Ackerman, Founding Chair, International Center on Nonviolent Conflict


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Fall/Winter 2009: Nooristan Foundation Updates

Dear Friends,

Given your generous interest toward Afghanistan, I am certain that you have paid great attention to what is happening there.  Events can be confusing and even discouraging. However, instead of dampening our commitment to help our Afghan friends move their country toward greater peace and stability, this should strengthen it.  This is the time to make a difference.

Poverty, as Nobel Prize winner Mohammed Yunus states, is a threat to peace.  The investment in social change will pay off provided we stay the course.  I believe that our “soft” strategy of helping people will continue to build friendships.  I am writing to ask you to maintain your support to the Nooristan Foundation.  Together we have started to build a better world, let us continue.
 
In recent months, thanks to your help, Nooristan Foundation has been able to make tangible progress (see below).  I want to thank you again for your continued trust and generosity.  By themselves, the Nooristan Foundation’s programs are modest, but each makes a tangible difference in the lives of poor Afghans.  We are contributing to our nation’s effort in Afghanistan.  To enable us to continue this work, we hope that the Foundation can count on your further financial support.  Afghanistan remains a worthy cause. 

Thank you very much for your support,

Marie Kux
President


TAKHAR MIDWIFE TRAINING PROGRAM

The Nooristan Foundation, with its partners, the Marigold Fund and the Afghan Midwives Association, has supported the training of 80 midwives in Takhar province. This area has one of the worst maternal mortality rates in the world, with approximately 1600 maternal deaths per 100,000 live births per year. Throughout Afghanistan, there is a critical shortage of health care workers and facilities. It is estimated that there is presently only one doctor for every 50,000 (UNDP).

Your donations at the Foundation’s spring benefit at the Embassy of Greece and a further $10,000 grant from American Women for International Understanding (AWIU), our key benefactor, have enabled us to continue to fund the midwife program. Most women have embraced this profession after witnessing tragedy and often death in childbirth.  We know that a mother’s death has costs beyond the loss of life.  Given how vital midwives are, we hope that in the future the Foundation will be able to raise the funds for similar training programs in other needy areas.  To view images, click on our gallery


PASIGAM VILLAGE SCHOOL, NOORISTAN

Nooristan Foundation and Raqim Foundation have partnered to support the establishment of a village school in the Nooristan province of Afghanistan, an area that has seen heavy warfare recently.
With over $5,000 in donations gathered by Raqim Foundation and Nooristan Foundation, funding was sent to provide support for the first three months of operation of the school.  This covered teacher salaries, caretakers, school supplies, transportation, rent for suitable quarters, school bags, and art supplies.  Local craftsmen were hired to build desks and chairs.  Classes started on July 1st, 2009.  Despite the tense security situation in Nooristan and logistical obstacles, significant progress has been made.

The support of Nooristan Foundation, Raqim Foundation, volunteers and donors like you has led to the establishment of the only primary school in Pasigam Village.  One school at a time, we can make a difference.


NEW BEGINNINGS, BAGHE DAOUD CAMP

Several million Afghans fled to Pakistan and Iran to escape fighting and the Taliban.  Many have returned hoping to rebuild their lives, but the ongoing conflict and the lack of socio-economic opportunities have left thousands in heart-breaking conditions, abandoned by the government. 

Last winter, again thanks to you, the Foundation provided $11,000 for emergency relief to some 92 internally displaced families at Baghe Daoud, an hour from Kabul.  Our help enabled these destitute refugees to survive the bitter cold.  We provided each family with plastic sheeting, blankets, fuel, rice, flour, beans, sugar and tea. 
The Foundation is now working with PARSA, a local NGO, to develop and implement a program to give these desperately poor families a “new beginning,” the skills they need to lift themselves out of poverty.  We are trying to answer their desperate plea that we not abandon them. 


THANK YOU

Through the generous support of donors like you, and the dedicated service of its Board and Committee members, Nooristan Foundation has helped to get assistance from the people of the United States directly to the people of Afghanistan.  This has been done with very little overhead since Nooristan Foundation’s Board and Committee members are all volunteers.  The three programs above are the current projects of focus for the Foundation, but more can be done.  You can make a difference in the lives of individuals who have experienced great conflict and hardship. 


SPECIAL THANKS TO:

Parween Mascari for organizing “Generation Morgantown Fundraiser for Pasigam Village School” in West Virginia in June 2009.  The event raised awareness and funds for Nooristan Foundation’s village school project.

Ann-Scott Ettinger and the Unitarian Universalist Church of Spokane WA for organizing an auction in the month of October to benefit Nooristan Foundation.


June 2009: Nooristan Foundation in The National Herald

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June 2009: Voice of America Coverage of Nooristan Foundation Event

Watch Voice of America’s coverage of the Nooristan Foundation event at the Embassy of Greece here.  Coverage begins at 15:55:

http://www.voanews.com/wm/voa/sca/dari/dari1330vbSUN.asx


Note: Segment is in Dari


May 2009: High-Profile Event Fetches Funds For School In Nuristan

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Lalit K. Jha - May 10, 2009

WASHINGTON (PAN): A high profile event attended by powerful lawmakers and eminent people last week raised enough funds to establish the first primary school in Pasigam village in the remote mountains of Nooristan province, organizers announced Saturday.

Hosted by the Embassy of Greece in Washington, the fundraiser event was organized by Nooristan Foundation, a non-profit US organization working in the Afghan province carrying the same name.

Aptly named “In the Footsteps of Alexander the Great”, the event among others was attended by Congressman Howard Berman, Chairman of the powerful House Committee on Foreign Affairs, Congressmen Lee Hamilton, Dana Rohrabacher, John Sarbanes, Chris Hollen and Robert Wexler.

The former US Ambassador to Afghanistan, Ronald Neumann and Thomas Pickering also attended the fundraiser event which was marked by a cultural event. Nooristan Foundation’s President, Marie Kux, shared information on projects that would be supported by the event, which include a village school in the Pasigam village of Nooristan Province, a midwife training project in Takhar Province and a project to assist internally displaced persons in Kabul Province.

People attending the event, also enjoyed a fascinating lecture by well-known archeologist and curator of the exhibition Hidden Treasures of Afghanistan, Dr. Fredrik Hiebert.  Using images of historic finds, Dr. Hiebert shed light on the influences of Grecian art in Afghan art and design.  After the lecture, excerpts of a BBC documentary tracing Alexander the Great’s journey was screened for the audience.

Nooristan Foundation’s founder Dr. Nadir Atash said: “Providing support for education and economic development throughout Afghanistan, especially for rural areas, is vital to securing stability.  The Afghan people have suffered tremendously and want to live in peace and work towards a better future.”


May 2009: Nooristan Foundation Benefit a Huge Success

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High Profile Dignitaries, Congressional Representatives and Socialites Join Over 250 Guests at Unique Cultural Event to Benefit Afghanistan

Washington D.C. –  The Embassy of Greece in Washington D.C. hosted a special event to celebrate the cultural, historic and political connections between Greece and Afghanistan.  As part of NATO, Greece has committed troops to Afghanistan and also supports education and cultural preservation projects.  Historians have written about the descendants of Alexander the Great’s Macedonian army, some who remained in the valleys of present day Afghanistan during his effort to conquer Asia.  This can particularly be seen in Nooristan province.  Language, dress and dance styles are reminders of this historic connection.  Although Afghanistan has experienced war and conflict in recent decades, its archeological sites are still revealing fascinating treasures of its ancient cultures. 

The event was co-hosted by Nooristan Foundation, a U.S. 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that provides humanitarian, medical, and educational assistance to rural areas of Afghanistan.  Prominent individuals traveled from many different states to join Washingtonians for the much anticipated event. 

“In the Footsteps of Alexander the Great,” started with welcoming remarks by Greece’s Ambassador to the United States, H.E. Alexandros Mallias at the Embassy’s Cultural Center.  Afghanistan’s Deputy Minister of Culture, Mr. Omar Sultan, who was educated in Greece in the 1970s, shared insights on current efforts to preserve Afghanistan’s cultural heritage and monuments.  Congressman Chris Van Hollen, a member of the Honorary Host Committee for the event, attended and discussed Congressional efforts to support Afghanistan. 

Mrs. Marie Kux, Nooristan Foundation’s President, shared information on projects that would be supported by the event, which include a village school in the Pasigam Village of Nooristan Province, a midwife training project in Takhar Province and a project to assist internally displaced persons in Kabul Province.  Mrs. Shamim Jawad, the wife of the Afghan Ambassador to the United States Said Tayeb Jawad, expressed her gratitude for the Foundation and the Greek government’s support for development in Afghanistan.

Guests then enjoyed a fascinating lecture by well-known archaeologist and curator of the exhibition “Hidden Treasures of Afghanistan,” Dr. Fredrik Hiebert.  Using images of historic finds, Dr. Hiebert shed light on the influences of Grecian art in Afghan art and design.  After the lecture, excerpts of a BBC documentary tracing Alexander the Great’s journey was screened for the audience. 

A dinner buffet of authentic Afghan cuisine, provided by Bamian Restaurant, as well as Greek delicacies, were served in the Embassy’s reception hall.  Attendees in the ballroom enjoyed listening and dancing to music by an ensemble of Greek musicians.  At the end of the evening, airline tickets to Greece donated by Olympic Airlines and Aegen Airlines were auctioned to benefit Nooristan Foundation.  Guests received Afghan hand embroidered gifts from Artizan Sarai, as well the film “Qadir”, courtesy of the Greek Embassy.

Nooristan Foundation’s founder Dr. Nadir Atash, the first Afghan-American to establish a non-profit that provides assistance to the Nooristan Province states, “Providing support for education and economic development throughout Afghanistan, especially for rural areas, is vital to securing stability.  The Afghan people have suffered tremendously and want to live in peace and work towards a better future.” 

After the event, Nooristan Foundation announced that the benefit raised enough funds to establish the first primary school in Pasigam Village, in the remote mountains of Nooristan. 

The celebration left its mark on those who attended and created a new sense of appreciation for the connections between these countries.  A new connection between Greeks, Afghans and Americans has thus been forged, building the future for children in Afghanistan.


March 2009: Nooristan Foundation Provides Humanitarian Assistance to Baghe Daoud Refugee Camp

March 31st 2009, Northern VA - Nooristan Foundation completed a winter relief distribution to benefit 92 families in a refugee camp an hour outside of Kabul. Through the generous support of members, volunteers, and donors, Nooristan Foundation has raised close to $14,000 to date to provide essential supplies to help the families survive the harsh winter in Afghanistan.

The plight of these internally displaced persons was seen by Nooristan Foundation’s President, Mrs. Marie Kux, during her trip to Afghanistan in 2006. Mrs. Kux states, “I could not get these families out of my mind and was constantly reminded of their struggle to survive in very difficult conditions.” The Foundation decided it would take action to assist these families.

The Foundation is now working on a project, “New Beginnings,” which will assist the families to become more self-sufficient. Initially, Nooristan Foundation was going to purchase tents and supplies, but at the request of the families, blankets, plastic sheeting and other supplies were purchased. With the donations, Nooristan Foundation provided each family with blankets, plastic sheeting to cover holes in the shelter they live in, food, and fuel.

Families in Baghe Daoud expressed great appreciation for the Foundation’s support. They expressed frustration regarding the lack of assistance by the Afghan government or international donors. The Foundation is working to raise funds for the project, which will provide the families with opportunities as they begin a new life.

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Fall 2008- Nooristan Foundation Mobilizes DC Area Communities to Donate Winter Clothing

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

October 1st, 2008 - Nooristan Foundation today concluded a successful winter clothing and blanket drive for the needy in Afghanistan. The Foundation mobilized the Afghan-American community, as well as students and U.S. businesses, to assist with the drive. Through this effort, one container of clothing was packed and shipped by DHL Global Logistics to Afghanisatan.

For the collection, the Foundation partnered with Blanket Brigade, an organization that has organized collection drives in the past. Collectively, the organizations set up donation drop off points in the Washington D.C. metropolitan area and promoted the drive to the Afghan-American community, churches, schools and universities. DHL Global Logistics generously offered free shipment of the winter clothing to Afghanistan.

Nooristan Foundation has selected Afghans4Tomorrow, a nonprofit organization that has experience implementing humanitarian projects in Afghanistan, to serve as the Foundation’s distribution partner in Afghanistan. The project was made possible through the volunteer efforts of Mr. Atta Amin, an Afghan-American businessman who connected the Foundation to DHL.

Nooristan Foundation hopes to support additional efforts in the future that can allocate necessary and useful supplies to poor communities in Afghanistan.


2008 Nooristan Foundation, Blanket Brigade, DHL Clothing Drive

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

September 2008, Northern VA - Nooristan Foundation partnered with Blanket Brigade, an organization that has organized collection drives in the past. Collectively, the organizations set up donation drop off points in the Washington D.C. metropolitan area and promoted the drive to the Afghan-American community. DHL offered free shipment of the clothing to Afghanistan.  Blanket Brigade helped to secure a location, promoted the drive, and is going to help with distribution.  Afghans4Tomorrow, an NGO in Afghanistan, successfully distributed the clothing.


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