Norwegian NGOs have a long history of development assistance to
Afghanistan. Some of the most important NGOs engaged in the country
today are the Norwegian Afghanistan Committee and Norwegian Church Aid.
The Norwegian Afghanistan Committee
NAC started out as a solidarity organization after the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan in 1979. The organization has since evolved into a relief and development NGO, focussing especially on education, health and environment. The purpose of NAC is to support the long-term interests of Afghanistan through solidarity work and practical development activities in the country, and to promote knowledge about Afghanistan, the country and its culture. NAC is a member-based, non-aligned, non-religious and non-commercial organization that operates independently of national authorities.
Over the years, the NAC has supported education of Afghan children by building schools, providing learning equipment and by training teachers. Education within the formal school system is now the responsibility of Afghan authorities, and the NAC supports the Afghan government’s national development strategies and their goal to provide education for all, by establishment of model schools, teacher training, building and improving already existing schools.
NAC has worked with environment activities in Badakshahn province since 1992. The initiative for this came from local authorities, who consulted Norwegian experts on how to restore eroded land and forest after major floods and earthquakes. Model farms, watershed management, terracing and tree planting in vulnerable hillsides, together with environmental awareness training are key components of the program. The programme also includes the “Foster Mum”-project, where poor women are trained in how to nurture and take care of saplings.
NAC has worked in the health sector in Afghanistan since 1986, when NAC staff ran mobile emergency health clinics. From 1991, the mobile clinics have been upgraded to a network of permanent health clinics with basic medical equipment and staffed with doctors, trained birth attendants, nurses and support staff. From 1997, NAC has implemented a Basic Package of Health in 7 districts in Ghazni. The past seven years, NAC has worked together with Nangahar Institute of Health Sciences to train and educate midwifes. 244 midwifes have graduated. That makes 10 percent of all certified midwifes in Afghanistan.
Children at Gul Dara School outside Kabul show drawings they have received from their friendship school in Norway, Vinderen School in Oslo.
The “Foster Mum-programme entails training Afghan women in taking care of saplings and seedlings that are later planted in NAC constructed parks, gardens and reforestation projects. In return, the women receive food or money.
For more information, please visit the Norwegian Afghanistan Committee website:
Norwegian Church Aid
The Norwegian Church Aid (NCA) receives funds from the Norwegian government for an integrated rural development program in the Faryab province consisting of several projects concerning agriculture and food security. The NCAs program also consists of additional projects focusing on water, sanitation, energy, women empowerment, vocational training and literacy training. The organization manages a program consisting of several projects concerning agriculture and food security in the provinces of Daikundi and Uruzgan. The NCAs program also consist of additional projects focusing on water, sanitation, energy, women empowerment, vocational training and literacy training, The Norwegian government also contributes funds to DACAAR, Save the Children and CARE.
For more information, please visit the Norwegian Church Aid website: