18th Dec, 2017

Fight against poverty being taken to Afghanistan by Leamington charity

THE FIGHT against extreme-poverty is being taken to communities in war-torn Afghanistan by a Leamington-based charity.

Thare Machi Education (TME) creates educational DVDs on life-saving topics from avoiding malaria and safe handwashing to preventing human trafficking.

Volunteers in Afghanistan are working with the charity to translate and distribute some 6,000 DVDs which could be shown as many as 900,000 times.

The foundation – whose name means ‘starfish’ in the Indian language of Marathi – has chosen to focus on the country which is one of the least developed in the world, with a high rate of infant mortality, disease and poor immunisation coverage.

And contaminated water, especially in the capital Kabul means deaths from water-borne diseases and malaria are alarmingly high.

Many people require basic health and medical education on topics such as disease prevention, the dangers of smoking, and family planning.

TME director Rachel Butt said: ” As a result of years of conflict, and the impact of the Taliban, children spend an average of just three-and-a-half years in school.

“It has long been our hope to provide families in Afghanistan with our life-changing lessons, and now that we have some really good contacts there who share that vision, we think we can finally make it happen.”

Rachel said the charity often received feedback from its partners on how the lessons had helped in other areas.

“We recently carried our a research project in Rwanda which proved the lessons had an impact.

“Cases of childhood diseases, which can be fatal, were reduced so we know the lessons save lives.

“We’ve heard of women in India telling their friends about the importance of basic hygiene, of men in Democratic Republic of Congo who had no idea that smoking could be dangerous and have now stopped, of children in Kenya rescued from traffickers as a result of our human trafficking lesson.”

The DVD scripts are written in consultation with experts, translated locally or in the relevant country, and then sent to organisations working in the respective country.

Portable players or laptops that can be charged up are carried to areas where there is no electricity, and the charity rely on advice and judgement of their foreign counterparts surrounding the difficulties of the ongoing war.

And from November 28 to December 2 – the charity aims to raise £7,500. through The Christmas Challenge Big Give campaign.

All contributions will be doubled during the match funding campaign, which helps charities nationwide.

Visit thebiggive.org.uk and search Thare Machi to donate.

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