Following decades of conflict, Afghanistan has focused on revitalizing social systems and establishing new ones to protect, educate and improve health care for Afghan children and their mothers. Despite enormous obstacles and a harsh climate and terrain, considerable progress has been achieved: the chances of survival for children and women have increased considerably; more children and adolescents are enrolled in school at all levels, and larger numbers of families have access to clean and safe water, particularly in urban areas.
But challenges remain and everyday life for the children and women of Afghanistan can be extremely daunting.
Progress has been uneven, benefitting mostly areas that are easier to reach. Afghans living in rural, remote areas or insecure districts are less likely to have access to basic services. For generations who have grown up in the midst of conflict, this has compounded people’s lack of access to — and knowledge about — education, healthcare, water and sanitation and their rights. Women and girls, in particular, continue to be an extremely vulnerable population.
1 in 18 Afghan children
FAIL TO REACH THEIR FIRST BIRTHDAY
46% of children aged 12 to 23 months
HAVE NOT RECEIVED THEIR BASIC VACCINES
1 in 3 girls are
MARRIED BEFORE THEIR 18th BIRTHDAY
2 in 5 children
CANNOT REACH FULL MENTAL OR PHYSICAL DEVELOPMENT
1 in 4 children
1.3 million children under 5 years old need treatment for
Almost 50% of improved drinking water sources are
CONTAMINATED WITH FECAL MATTER
Over 4 million people still practice
3.7 million children are ‘out-of-school’
60% OF THEM ARE GIRLS
Only 19% of females under 15 years old
Afghanistan is still battling polio with
14 CASES REPORTED IN 2017
31% of adolescent girls