Kandahar Treasure employs 350 women artisans who use a rare form of hand embroidery to decorate scarves and purses. The organization distributes raw materials so that women can earn a living while working in the safety of their own homes. Kandahar Treasures’ wish for the women of Afghanistan is for a peaceful and stable country. “The women of Afghanistan are tired of over 30 years of war and as the biggest and quietest victims of all, the women are now calling upon their sisters all over the world to help them get out of this violence.”
Here are the words of Parween, one of the many women working with Kandahar Treasure:
How has working with Kandahar Treasure changed your life?
I have 7 children and I never thought that it was my duty to help my family until my husband lost his job and I was forced to come out of the house to work for my family. It was hard in the beginning, but after a while I realized that working and earning an income gave me independence and confidence that I never thought I had! Shorwa (soup made with lamb or beef) is a must in many Afghan families for dinner and before I was working, my husband would eat the meat and I would eat bread with the broth – but now that I am working I eat the meat as well! I no longer feel bad or feel that I am a burden for my husband.
Thank you for making me and all of the other 350 women feel that we can be active citizens of our society as well. We are better than our men because we spend our income on our children unlike our husbands. Feel proud of the product you have purchased because you give us an opportunity to continue to empower ourselves, our families and our communities. Again, we thank you for your support.
What are your hopes for the women of Afghanistan for the coming year?
I hope that all of the women of Afghanistan can unite to speak loud and clear to their leaders and the world that they are tired of this unjust war and that will no longer sit silent to watch their loved ones die in unjust attacks. I hope that our ability to earn and bring an income to our homes will make the men believe that not only can we take care of our homes and children, but we can also be active participants and positive and peaceful agents of peace in Afghanistan.