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Our WorkAs the leading inter-governmental organization promoting since 1951 humane and orderly migration, IOM plays a key role to support the achievement of the 2030 Agenda through different areas of intervention that connect both humanitarian assistance and sustainable development. Across Afghanistan, IOM addresses capacity building in migration management, migration and development development, migrant assistance and labour migration.
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Stories can enter our wounds; wounds are a window to enter the world of explanation.
I would like to start this story with words that strengthen the heart and spirit. Yes, I want to say that I am a woman with a strong commitment, a woman who has never failed towards the difficulties of life and never give up.
Even on the eve of the fall of the previous government, when everything was already broken, everyone was in fear and trembling and a cold silence covered the roads and houses. Everyone's thoughts and feelings about women and girls were dried up. But I continued. I continued to motivate my generation in the direction of hope and resistance, through sharing motivational posts on virtual platforms and spread positivity. I had devoted myself to this path.
I have been responsible for supporting my family since a young age. With obviously many challenges and obstacles but I never complained. I completed a higher education so that I could be a source of service to my country through my knowledge and experience for a nation and society whose 85% lives are below the poverty line. I had devoted myself to this path.
But now that I see every event coming with the new decrees imposed on women of my country, it is slowly breaking me. The announcement felt like a nightmare, and it shaken the root of my resistance and my feelings became dark as the night. My thoughts got stuck.
Warm tear drops painted on my cheeks with the extreme cold of winter, but my hands refused to stay still. They immediately wiped those tears away so that it wouldn't make me weak and defeated. And then it got me. How can they make us understand that women's work is not acceptable? How can I accept this forced isolation of women and the removal of their employment opportunities, which will destroy their entire identity?
For a moment I looked at a society where bread is missing from the tables of most of its inhabitants. Where the whole country smells of hunger, smell of death. A country where human ideals have been reduced to a mere loaf of bread. Suppose women don't work, now which government will meet the basic needs of families headed by a woman or the man in that family is unable to work, which government should they turn to for help?
They are trying to take away the role I should have played as a woman. Our team is working on emergency aid for the affected families, but with the imposition of these bans, my responsibility to visit the affected families has been taken away from me, the team of male colleagues is not allowed to visit the affected families headed by a woman. And so, the work process of our team is paralyzed, and the families of the victims are in a worse situation every day.
But let's not be afraid, let's not give up and let's continue this fight. Let's take an even more conscious step and believe that the ignorant are condemned to be just tools.
You can ignore our identity, take away our rights to contribute to our own communities, you can confiscate our identity cards and all our educational and professional documents, you can even threaten us with death. But what will you do with our free spirit?
Name and identifying details have been changed to protect the identity of the humanitarian worker.