Judo for fred (JFF) held its annual partner meeting 2 and 3 March, this time in Kabul. JFF Norway was represented by Ole Moland and Birgit Ryningen. The Afghan project coordinators presented their respective projects, and we are thoroughly impressed. JFF supports 5 projects in Afghanistan: two projects for street children, one orphanage, one girls’ project and one project for youths in Kabul. The judo activity is very high, and we are impressed with how far the money go.
As an example of how we work, I’ll say a few words about one of the projects for street children. Aschiana is a center for street working children, and we have cooperated with them for several years. This is a place where children can come between working hours. It is a safe place for them, and they get education and may partake in different activities, such as handicraft and judo. Today, 285 children (including almost 20 girls) practice judo at Aschiana. The images below were borrowed from a presentation by Aschiana, and show three of the children as they practice judo and while they work. They are Martin, Murshed and Rafiq, and they all have to support all or part of their families with their income. The head instructor at Aschiana, Bazmuhammad, is a member of the Afghan JFF steering committe. He used to be a street working child himself, and got his judo training through our Aschiana project.
During the meeting, a new steering committee was elected for JFF Afghanistan. They call themselves “Judo Barai Solha”, which is Dari and, like “judo for fred”, simply means “judo for peace”. In the photo below, the whole committee is posing in their new Norwegian knit caps. We are excited about working with them, and look forward to the remainder of 2015!
Written by Birgit Ryningen