“While I live and breathe I will work tirelessly to protect, heal and educate the women and children of Afghanistan.”
Mahboba Rawi, Founder of Mahboba’s Promise
Mahboba’s Promise is an Australian non-profit organisation dedicated to the women and children of Afghanistan. Mahboba’s Promise’s ongoing projects have provided education and homes for children; vocational skills and training for women; and support and healthcare access for the wider community; bringing valuable, sustainable change to the people of war-torn Afghanistan.
Mahboba Rawi, founder of Mahboba’s Promise is an inspiration to many. I have the deepest respect and love for Mahboba. She has found a way to direct the fire of her own personal pain and loss into a passion to create positive change.
I met Mahboba and she expressed the need of a photographer to go with her to Afghanistan. The aim was to document Hope House, take portraits of the children and to mentor children from the orphanage in photography. At first I said no, through fear and then she told me the story of one child, Sadiqa and this was enough to change my path. If I could help just one child the trip to Afghanistan would be worth it. I was terrified and had to overcome a lot of fears to be able to arrive in Kabul.
My life’s dream is to document positive aspects of community and you can not find a more positive story than that of what Mahboba’s promise is doing in Afghanistan! I had to go.
Within the orphanage’s walls it is like a bubble of hope. What Mahboba’s promise has created there, is truly special. The children have hope, they have dreams, they express the desire to study. They are healthy, well fed, well dressed, active and there is a shine in their eyes. There has been healing within these children. Mahboba expressed to me and I saw with my own experience that the children of Hope house have learnt what love is, the different kinds of love (not just between a husband and wife) and they have learnt forgiveness. The children are kind, polite, gentle and loving of each other. It is evident that they feel loved themselves. When I was there they came to Mahboba day and night to receive hugs, advise, love & attention from their mother and they were all attended to. Mahboba works 24hrs/7 days and never stops. She will watch the children from her window, if she finds a moment to spare.
It is not only the children but the widows too that Mahboba cares for. I witnessed what it was to be there on widows day. Widows arrive from miles around, by truck or by foot. They wait for long hours for their name to be called out to receive a package of rice, flour and oil. During that time Mahboba is listening to their stories and their needs/demands. There are many widows that arrive but are sent away because they do not have a sponsor.
Mahboba will visit widows and children on the street and listen to their story. It is not possible for her to help everyone although she would like to.
I learnt so much from the journey to Afghanistan with Mahboba, I learnt more then I could explain here. Although I will share…. My deepest lesson learnt from going to Afghanistan is this…. I have come back with a huge responsibility to make the most of my life. Not necessarily to climb the highest mountain or be a multi millionaire but to be the best person I can be. I have realised what an insult it is to the universe & to all those people I saw that don’t have a choice, if I am not to make the most of this life I have been given. My life’s priority is to give with Love and Compassion.
You will find more information on Mahboba’s Promise have a look on their website.