A Broken Heart for Afghanistan: A Reading List

We wanted to do something, anything. So we compiled this list of resources.

The takeover of Afghanistan by the Taliban is shocking, and the future facing Afghan women and children, or anyone who assisted or worked for the Western allies during the occupation, is scary. It’s hard not to be reminded of Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai, the fifteen-year-old who survived being shot on her school bus by the Taliban, in retaliation for her activist work in protesting the right to education for women and girls.

In light of the overwhelming circumstances currently faced by our sisters and brothers in Afghanistan, the PP whānau wanted to do something, anything that could help, in our own small way.

So, we’ve compiled the following incomplete list of voices to follow, support and listen to on the currently unfolding situation, from Afghan and Middle East perspectives to resources on the experiences of women living under the rule of extremist groups and ways you can directly help right now.

“I never understood who you are and why you don’t want us to live in peace. Talib? Isis? Or…Let’s make peace. I want my country, my home back.I want peace and freedom for my people. – Shamsia Hassani

  • This is a list by activist Hawa of practical ways to help. It’s a Google Doc, so you can add to it. The general idea is to get people from all over the world to contribute, adding in ways to help from wherever they are.
  • And her podcast episode on The Crimson Coyote.

Closer to home here in Aotearoa:

  • If you or anyone you know needs support, New Settlers Family and Community Trust in Aotearoa have launched this telephone service for those affected by the ongoing humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan. Fluent Dari and Pashto speakers are available.


And more broadly, some resources on the devastating experiences of women at risk from extremist groups and authoritarian states:

If you want to take direct action, you can give money to this GoFundMe fundraiser – Afghanistan: A call for urgent help – or to the Mothers of Afghanistan. Both are providing basic necessities for displaced people in Kabul. You can also support the Massoud Foundation to help Afghan refugees who have crossed treacherous mountain passes to reach the safety of the Panjshir Valley.

If you would prefer to support an Aotearoa-based fundraiser the Auckland Refugee Family Trust has set up this Give A Little to keep Afghan women safe and Bilal Nasier has a Give A Little to support Afghan refugees arriving into Aotearoa.

We’d like to keep adding to this list, so if you’ve read something you think should be on here, let our editor know at [email protected].

Feature image: Pounamu Wharekawa-Farrell

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The Pantograph Punch publishes urgent and vital cultural commentary by the most exciting new voices in Aotearoa.

The Pantograph Punch publishes urgent and vital cultural commentary by the most exciting new voices in Aotearoa.

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