IDLO and its partners in the Afghan Shelter Network officially welcomed the new Minister of Women’s Affairs, Dilbar Nazari, at an event in Kabul this month organized to showcase the critical work of the Women’s Protection Centers. Ms Nazari praised IDLO for its work with the shelters and ‘for taking a vital role in supporting and establishing the network itself.’
The minister also mentioned that following her recent meeting with the IDLO leadership in Afghanistan, she hoped that they would continue to work together to foster further cooperation and support for the women of Afghanistan. Her department, she promised, would ‘with all the facilities at their disposal, cooperate with the directors of these shelters for greater, and improved, service delivery by these institutions.’ For her part, Fauzia Habibi, the Deputy Minister of Administration, also pledged to provide the women’s protection centers with further assistance.
The event was seen as a crucial opportunity for the Afghan Shelter Network to build stronger relations with the new Afghan administration and create awareness about the shelter services. The network’s members include the Afghan Women Skills Development Center (AWSDC), Voice of Women Organization (VWO), Humanitarian Assistance for the Women and Children of Afghanistan (HAWCA), and Women for Afghan Women (WAW).
The Women’s Protection Centers, or shelters for victims of abuse, support women whilst they pursue legal processes against the perpetrators, but also offer them the chance to take courses and gain valuable skills, from learning to read and write, to learning a trade, and familiarizing themselves women’s and children’s rights.