About Kids Being Kids: Afghanistan

natalie_carney__afghan_orphans.jpgKids Being Kids: Afghanistan is a Dubai-based charity organization aimed at helping the orphaned children of Afghanistan. Following nearly three decades of war and atrocities throughout the country, it's the helpless, innocent children that continue to suffer.

According to international organizations, there are currently more than two million orphaned children in Afghanistan. About 700,000 of these live in sub-poverty conditions! Meanwhile, it is estimated that nearly 30,000 children live on the streets of the capital Kabul alone.

Afghanistan presents a sharp contrast to the United Arab Emirates. The UAE has given its youth and many expatriates great opportunities to establish prosperous futures. After her travels to Afghanistan, Natalie Carney (pictured above), realized that the same ideals should and could be applied to children in Afghanistan with the help and support of UAE residents.

Her aim is to simply re-direct the excess; a “re-balancing act” as she calls it.

The Beginning

Kids Being Kids: Afghanistan began as a very humble act of good will. What was intended to be a simple weekend getaway from the day-to-day routine of Dubai has grown into a much larger endeavor.

Two young female journalists decided to take with them four suitcases of children’s clothing and goods to an orphanage while on a long weekend holiday to Kabul. Natalie Carney contacted an orphanage on-line and a meeting was arranged. After spending a day with the children, the women returned with many pictures and tales of their experience.

As they shared the stories of Kabul, Natalie was inundated with an overwhelming response of encouragement, support and offers of donations, and she realized that far more could be done to help the orphaned children of Afghanistan. 

These offers of support continue.

The Name “Kids Being Kids”
Then name has a very simple yet powerful message. We want to supply these children with the necessities they deserve to simply live their years; to allow “Kids” to be “Kids.

The Children
Currently, Kids Being Kids: Afghanistan is connected with The Mehan Orphanage located in Kabul. It is home to 60 beautiful children full of promise from a variety of different Afghan backgrounds. Each child has a unique story. From being found almost dead from mal-nourishment; abandoned on the orphanage steps; as runaways from families forcing them to marry men five times their age, many who lost both parents during the 30 years of war.

Faheema, for example, comes from a small Pushtun village in Farah province. An American air bombardment left her face completely sheared. When I met her she had recently returned from an operation in America where they attempted to repair the damage to her skin. However she had difficulty returning to her village due to the roads being too dangerous. At the time American forces were negotiating with local warlords to allow them to fly her home.

Farzana, on the other hand, is from a place called Yakawlang in Bamyan province, which was brutality attacked by the Taliban on January 9th, 2001. Her father was killed, along with 300 other men, in the massacre. Her mother re-married and now her stepfather, who wants nothing to do with Farzana, is attempting to marry her off to a man 30 years her elder. The 12-year-old girl pushed out the words “I don’t want to go” through floods of tears. The orphanage has no legal ground to stand on to help her.

Despite the hand they have been dealt, these little girls shared their dreams and ambitions, and both had hopes of becoming doctors when they grow up.

However these are not the only children that need your help!

Kids Being Kids: Afghanistan is certainly interested in branching out to help other orphans across the Middle East. These are the individuals that will not only shape the future of their own countries but aid in the betterment of international relations and thus the lives of everyone on this planet.

Community Support
Currently in addition to individual donations, the University of Exeter is interested in looking at ways to develop education is Afghanistan and Microsoft are donating a number of X-box 360 consoles to be given to the children as well as incentive to encourage further donations.

Local Dubai coffee shop Central Perk is offering 15% off any coffee for any donations dropped off at their locations.

Additionally Kids Being Kids: Afghanistan is looking to work with schools not only to gather further contributions, but educate children on both sides, about what exists outside their country’s borders. A letter writing campaign between the children is being developed.

Efforts are also being made in Vancouver, Canada to help the Afghan children. Penny drives are starting in schools to go towards helping their peers.

Related links:
Natalie Carney's "Kids Being Kids: Afghanistan" Video Blog Update
Carney's YouTube Channel (with video blog updates)

About Kids Being Kids: Afghanistan
It Only Takes Eight Days To Change The World (Daud)