Despite an efficient team in Afghanistan, the Nai Qala association would not be able to operate without its network of motivated volunteers.
Since 2007, the Nai Qala Association (NQA) has built schools and a health center to serve needy communities in the remote mountainous regions of Afghanistan. Nai Qala has changed the lives of thousands of people, from girls and boys finally accessing formal education to families improving their health standards and economic status.
For the same period of time, NQA has also significantly increased its operational capacity in Afghanistan, by setting up and strengthening an efficient team in Kabul, both quantitively and qualitatively. However, nothing can be taken for granted; none of NQA’s achievement would been possible without the dedication and hard work of NQA board members and volunteers in Switzerland and in Afghanistan.
Volunteers in Switzerland and Afghanistan
In Switzerland, the organization is governed by a board of volunteers with expertise in a variety of areas such as humanitarian, health or education. NQA is also supported there by a large network of volunteers who bring their contributions in different formats. Some have networks in local communities and help organize fundraising events, some help with writing and communication, some with translations, others with legal matters, or with managing NQA’s website and social media presence.
At the very beginning of NQA’s activity, the President’s accommodation and transportation in Afghanistan was entirely provided by local volunteers. Nai Qala can still count on several volunteers in Kabul today, whether for translations, travel or, as seen recently, for welcoming guests during the opening of the photo exhibition at Kabul University. Such local commitment also shows the Afghans own strong engagement and determination to participate in creating their own future.
All volunteers and board members believe strongly in profound change in the rural regions of Afghanistan. They give their time during or after their work, in the evenings, weekends or during holidays. They are committed to help with fundraising and do not hesitate when they have to chop onions or tomatoes to prepare a meal to raise money for Nai Qala. The way they help is an inspiring example of the volunteer philosophy. Some of them are almost “professional volunteers” and each of them is a symbol of solidarity between communities in Switzerland and those in Afghanistan.
Volunteering is used as a motivation message to NQA’s staff in Afghanistan – as well as to the communities that NQA helps, the construction companies NQA works with, and NQA’s government partners: “We Afghans must not take anything for granted. We must show accountability for all support that comes to us from the efforts of hard-working and good-hearted volunteers who do so much for us”reminds regularly Mrs. Rahim, NQA’s president.
The Nai Qala Association and all its beneficiaries are very thankful to all these people who dedicate their time, skills and passion to make remote rural Afghanistan a better place.