People are often forced to make tough decisions due to their economic circumstances. From choosing between health care or putting food on the table to essential hygiene items or school fees, someone or something suffers because of the choices being made.
In Afghanistan, Samaaneh was born with hemiplegia, a paralysis of the lower face, arm, and leg muscles on one side of the body caused by a lack of oxygen.“She has not been able to move her full right side since she was born,” expressed Samaaneh’s mother.
Before the Taliban took over the country last year, three-year-old Samaaneh was under the care of doctors and receiving regular physiotherapy in Afghanistan. Samaaneh’s father worked as a teacher and earned enough to support his wife and three children. He worked hard to save as much money as he could to guarantee they could continue to pay for Samaaneh’s necessary physiotherapy.
Following the Taliban seizure of Kabul, the country was thrown into chaos, and people, especially in academic and social sectors, were concerned for their safety. Samaaneh’s father, who was an activist as well as an educator, realized his family’s lives were at risk in Afghanistan, so they discreetly left the country. It took them four days to get to the Pakistan border.
“The growing conflicts and instability in the country forced me to think of my entire family’s safety and security,” shared Samaaneh’s concerned father.
In Pakistan, the family rents a house where everyone is crammed into one bedroom. Samaaneh’s siblings have no access to school. With barely any money left, the family can hardly afford three meals a day, let alone health care and other expenses.
To help address the urgent humanitarian crisis, PWS&D is supporting a project in Pakistan providing cash assistance to families and individuals who have fled their homes in Afghanistan and become refugees in Pakistan. Because most families escaped their homes with very little, this support will ensure they have access to food and other essential items.
Among the project’s participants is Samaaneh’s family. When the family received the first round of first cash assistance, Samaaneh’s father arranged for her to attend physiotherapy, and the family also bought essential items. The family will receive support for the next few months, during which they hope to continue Samaaneh’s physiotherapy and stockpile food for the next few months.
Since the Taliban takeover of Afghanistan in August 2021, PWS&D has not been able to provide urgent humanitarian assistance to those who desperately need it, due to sanctions against the Taliban. Your voice can make a difference. Ask the Canadian government to make an exemption that would allow humanitarian assistance to be sent to Afghanistan. Learn more here.