PLEASE HELP US SUPPORT HIGHLY VULNERABLE WOMEN AND THEIR FAMILIES IN AFGHANISTAN
We URGENTLY NEED FUNDS TO EVACUATE AND PROVIDE EMERGENCY RELIEF to our network of Afghan employees, trainers, associates and beneficiaries. We must offer sanctuary and assistance to those who trusted us to help them, as they tried to help themselves.
Afghanistan has fallen into the hands of the Taliban. Women are being stoned and whipped for wearing ‘inappropriate’ clothes. The reprisals are happening now. Afghan women and men associated with foreign NGOs and aid programs are in extreme danger.
Since 2013, Future Brilliance has worked alongside Afghan women and men to develop livelihoods in an effort to bring peace and prosperity to Kabul and remote Afghan villages. Since the Taliban took Kabul, our expert, crisis-management and humanitarian team has been working around the clock to facilitate the safe exodus of the most vulnerable Afghans, and to provide support for those who cannot leave.
We will not abandon those who choose to stay behind.
This is a rapidly changing situation and we intend to adapt and respond to the changing circumstances. Our priorities currently are:
1. Safe passage and emergency evacuation of at-risk persons, with a focus on Afghan women and children. This involves collating paperwork for eligible evacuees and helping them to access, with our team on the ground and in receiving countries, any and all viable safe passage options. This focus is both on the airport and land border solutions, pending dire security conditions.
2. Practical and financial support for asylum seekers, who will need assistance to establish themselves in their host country. We will supply clothes, SIM cards, laptops and assistance with re-skilling and job-sourcing in their new country.
3. Practical and financial support for the Future Brilliance trainees who will remain in Afghanistan. This includes ongoing marketing for their products so they may continue to make a living in-country.
4. Funding orphanages and safehouses to protect the vulnerable women and children sheltering there.
Future Brilliance has worked with over 100 Afghan women and artisans across the country to deliver training in digital literacy, artisanal jewelry making, co-operative development and business skills. Our trainees have in turn trained or employed over 1,300 artisans, most of them in rural areas, and many of them women.
The Afghans, in turn, placed their trust in us. Each one is now in the crosshairs for the ruthless payback they fear the Taliban will mete out when the last of the US and UK military planes leave Afghanistan.
One of our employees, a young Afghan woman trapped in Kabul, contacted us today. She told us:
"We are in trouble. We don’t know what to do. We are so confused. We don’t know about our future, even about tomorrow. What will happen? Many people have left Afghanistan already. We went to the airport, but there was no one to take to the US. The Taliban fired at us with guns, and we returned home. Unfortunately, we did not get a visa to go to another country. I wish you to do something for me, like (help get us a) visa or airplane ticket to take me from here to come directly to the US or the UK. Otherwise I think there is no chance for me.”
“Today the Taliban shared news about their plans. They will do forced marriage with young Afghan girls. Sometimes I think, suppose it will happen, I will kill myself and never go with a Talib”.
“We are so scared. They fire with guns around the houses. They make us wear black scarves and black masks. The situation is so worse for us. We didn't even think it would happen like that. I don't know about our future. It looks like a horror movie for us and we don't know what to do...”
Another young Future Brilliance trainee wrote to us today,
"You introduced me to the Digital Literacy training and we were given tablets by the end of the training. You are my only international contact right now and I’m reaching out because I know you have always helped girls and women and provided a lot of opportunities for them”.
“I’m in desperate need of help and I feel like I’m going to die in Kabul. Please help me. I can not stay here and be caged by the Taliban. I have big dreams. I want to do something good. I want to be free. Please, please, please help me. I have been crying nonstop for a few days. You are my only hope”.
We have a profound responsibility towards these brave girls whose lives we have touched and whose hopes we have raised. We are trying to secure safe passage for them, so that no friend and ally is left behind on the battlefield, and to support those who cannot leave. Translators, journalists, photographers, designers, women who studied in our jewelry training program (or the men who allowed them to travel and study), teachers, administrators and our associates, will be a target for the new radical Islamist regime.
The situation is changing by the hour. Charter, government and military flights are continuing to evacuate asylum seekers. Our links with US and UK government and diplomatic channels, developed during 9 years of work in Afghanistan, will give us the ability to deploy contributions responsibly and effectively, streamlining the visa application process. We shall also do so transparently. And every cent will be accounted for.
The Future Brilliance team is led by Sophia Swire , CEO of the GEDI.VC investment firm for female founders; Tui Shaub, an Associate Director at the thinktank the Berggruen Institute; and Phil Walker, an American immigration lawyer and former diplomat. The taskforce now comprises over 100 highly skilled and globally recognised business leaders across all time zones to ensure that we can respond at any hour to this unfolding humanitarian crisis.
To read about our work visit: http://www.futurebrilliance.net
To purchase jewelry designed and produced by Afghan artisans visit: https://aayendajewelry.com/
PLEASE GIVE WHATEVER YOU CAN. 100% of the funds collected will go to Afghans via our charity, Future Brilliance, rescuing and re-housing trusted and trusting individuals and their families, finding them work, food and shelter.
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