Tag Archives: kabul

DIY Creations

Despite the dire situation in Afghanistan, good things are happening, and T-O-I is happy to be part of it. The goal of DIY Creations is to empower women by providing them with skills, a job, and a salary, which can all lead to startup businesses.  During the Taliban era girls were not allowed an education and as a result today most women over the age of 30 in Afghanistan have no education, no experience, and no skills to be able to provide an income for their families. T-O-I believes that DIY creations can help women of Afghanistan to believe in themselves, to embrace individuality, and to inspire confidence that they will pass to their children.  T-O-M, T-O-I’s Afghan affiliate, is happy to welcome nine women, widows and orphan girls, who have joined the DIY Creations program since it began in November 2015.

How DIY Creations is already making a difference.

Momubah is an Afghan woman with a disabled husband and 5 children. Momubah and her family had only 20Afs/$.30USD to their name. Momubah and her daughter had made dough for bread and gave that last 20Afs to a baker to bake the bread for them. She had no idea where the next money would come from as she had already borrowed a lot of money from her family and they had no more to give. That same day Momubah received a call from TOM inviting her to be a program participant for DIY Creations. Momubah entered the program the next day and starting making beaded necklace ID holders, and on her first day took home 400Afs/$6.02USD for her work. Over the course of her first week in DIY Creations, she made over 1,900Afs/$28.61USD.  Momubah has become a regular program participant for DIY Creations and her family is now able to eat, purchase fuel for heat, and help pay for her daughter’s university education.

To show support for Momubah and women like her you can purchase these handmade items or make a donation to the DIY Creations program.

Request info about items through email: hello@t-o-i.org

DIY Creations-Afghanistan

Job Placement Assistance

In many developing countries the connection between businesses who have the need for good employees and the employees finding these opportunities is missing.  This gap creates a situation for both employer and potential job seeker that has a negative impact on both.Tikkun Olam International believes that closing this gap is a critical need in reducing unemployment, improving livelihood, giving hope, and changing lives.  For these reasons T-O-I has created a successful Jobs Placement program.  Focused on helping the most at-risk people find full-time sustainable jobs.

Tikkun Olam International believes that closing this gap is a critical need in reducing unemployment, improving livelihood, giving hope, and changing lives.  For these reasons, T-O-I has created a successful Jobs Placement program.  Focused on helping the most at-risk people find full-time sustainable jobs.

Program participants undergo a screening process to identify their experiences, skills, knowledge, etc.  This process is the foundation to understanding what participants might immediately qualify for, and where they may strive to get to in the future.  In many cases ,the participants are illiterate or have a very limited education.  However, they are motivated to provide for themselves and their families, and just need an opportunity to prove their worth. Despite these challenges, T-O-I continues to successfully place participates in long-term opportunities.

How does the Job Placement Program work?

Potential participants contact T-O-I and request to join the program. The participant completes an application indicating relevant personal information, work experience, education, etc. A program mentor then interviews the candidate to assess his/her abilities, skills, and experience. All this information is profiled in the database of T-O-I.

Many of the candidates do not have a Resume/CV, have never gone through an interview process, and have no prior work experience.  In this situation, the T-O-I job placement team works to assist them in creating a Resume/CV, and to understand what skills they can offer a potential employer. When there is an appropriate job vacancy, the mentor will give detailed information to the candidate (hours, location, salary, etc.), discuss the vacancy with the candidate, and help set an appointment with the employer. The T-O-I job placement team helps the candidate prepare for the interview, which includes question preparation, how to dress, training on work place ethics, etc. After the candidate starts their new job, the T-O-I program mentor assigned to that candidate keeps contact with the employer and employee to ensure that this placement is satisfactory to both. The T-O-I job placement team meets once a month with all successful participants. During this time, T-O-I encourages mentors, and guides candidates on numerous job related and personal related items.  T-O-I’s one-on-one approach to mentorship and support of participants is a key to the programs success.  The goal is always long-term, sustainable, life changing livelihood improvement.

Who does the Job Placement Program Help?

The T-O-I job placement program focuses on helping the most vulnerable groups of people first: orphans, widows, disabled persons, etc.

Micro-Finance

At T-O-I, we believe that Micro-finance is a sustainable way to assist the poorest economically active people to improve their lives, provide jobs and livelihood for employees and their families and make a positive impact in their community as a whole. Our micro-finance loans allow clients to increase the size of their businesses to meet market demand and as a result create more income. With this income they are able to provide better schooling for their children, better housing for their family, more consistent food for their family, better healthcare for their family, etc. T-O-I directly impacts the multidimensional poverty indicators of its beneficiaries.

Additionally, as our clients grow their businesses they are generate a need for employees. Members of their community with the proper job skills meet this need. By providing a job for one member of the community you are not just providing for one person, but usually for a family of 4-8 people; 6 on average. Now the impact of a micro-finance loan that has allowed one business owner to increase his business has improved the lives of his family + his employee’s family = 12 people. We know that helping people improve their current business we can improve the lives of an exponential number of people, and this practice is already happening. By changing one life, we help countless other people.

What makes T-O-M program different?

T-O-M’s vision is to focus on building a world without poverty where people have access to resources and opportunities to improve their own lives.

T-O-M’s Mission:  Through micro-finance and skills development we enable the poor to improve their income and change their lives forever.

Social Performance of T-O-M principals:

“ No consumer loans, only business development to improve clients income and livelihood

“ We measure the improvement of the client’s financial situation before each partnership. If the client’s situation is has not improved we don’t give a partnership, but look at how to adjust the situation to improve the client’s situation. T-O-M must see improved income to the client and his family. T-O-M is interested on easing the burden on clients.

“ We measure the satisfaction of clients through surveys on T-O-M’s performance and staff following our core values.

T-O-M differs from other micro-finance companies, because our profits go back to the communities by way of social programs. T-O-M’s social performance department was created in January 2015.  The goal of this department is involved in measuring social performance and implementing social responsibility to build a strong relationship in the community, resolve racialism, fight against poverty, and help with the unemployment plague so many communities face today. T-O-M’s social performance department engages in helping some of the most at risk people. Providing job placement for orphans, widows and people with physical disabilities who tend to suffer more than the average person, especially in a downward economy.

Some of the Current Social Responsibility Programs of T-O-M:

“ The T-O-M Transition House that supports orphans as they transition from orphanage living to independent living.

“ Supporting economic empowerment through the Job Placement Program for Orphans, Widows, and those with physical disabilities.

“ Disaster Relief Program to serve communities when disasters occur.

“ DIY Handcraft Business start-ups for Afghan women and those with physical disabilities.

T-O-M currently is partnered with over 5,000 micro-businesses in Kabul, of which over 1,400 are businesses owned by women.  Since 2014, T-O-M has created over 110 jobs internally to Afghans.  To date, our Job Placement Program has placed 32 orphans, among them some with disabilities, 2 widows, and 1 man with a physical disability.  All of these people and are now self-sustainable, and in return contributing to the local economy. The T-O-M Transition House currently has 6 program participants and 10 more on the waiting list.  The DIY Handcraft Business Program is just getting off the ground this month with many anxious woman taking part.  The Disaster Relief Crew has already been out giving nonperishable food items to the victims and families of the Shah Shahid suicide attack that killed over 25 people and injured more than 400.  This is only the beginning of T-O-M’s work in Afghanistan. Join us in Repairing the World Together, One Life at a Time.

 TOM Performance Table, September 2015
 Number of Staff  151
 Number of active clients  5,198
 PAR (portfolio at risk) 30%  1.24%
 Gross Loan Portfolio (USD)   3,254,242
 Number of branches   2

 

 

 

Grand opening of new branch of Tikkun Olam Microfinance

Today, 1st of September 2015, more afghan people got an opportunity to improve their lives, because today T-O-M in Afghanistan has opened new branch.  The new branch opened its doors and welcomed all afghan people who are interested in developing their businesses.  T-O-M serves businesses and individual entrepreneurs by offering business investment services to help them develop their businesses.

Today governmental officials, district leaders and representatives of local and international NGOs came to the opening of the new branch. There were speeches given by the CEO of T-O-M and guests, such as the Executive Director of AMA, Najib Samim, wishing success to the new office.

The new microfinance product “musharaka” was also presented today during the opening. According to the Executive Director of AMA, T-O-M is a first company to offer the musharaka product to afghan businesses and the first company who will put it into practice.  According to the practices of other countries, musharaka is the most suitable for the economy of developing countries such as Afghanistan. T-O-M’s musharaka product conditions and requirements are based according to the Sharia law. All T-O-M business development officers are trained on the new product and have already provided services to clients.

T-O-M, as a part of T-O-I, has social performance and social responsibly at the core of its mission. Subsequently, the T-O-M Social Performance Manager introduced guests to the Social Performance and Social Responsibility programs being implemented by T-O-M. Currently a Transition Home for orphan boys, Job placement services for widows and orphans, handicraft design business development, and disaster relief programs are being targeted in Kabul.

At the end of the event there were fresh pastries served and guests were given souvenirs to remember the event.

We are grateful to be able to help and serve more people in Afghanistan. We believe that everyone has a right to opportunities that improve their lives and each person can help someone to Improve his/her life.

Grand opening of new branch of T-O-M

Today, 1st of September 2015, more afghan people got an opportunity to improve their lives, because today T-O-M in Afghanistan has opened new branch.  The new branch opened its doors and welcomed all afghan people who are interested in developing their businesses.  T-O-M serves businesses and individual entrepreneurs by offering business investment services to help them develop their businesses.

Today governmental officials, district leaders and representatives of local and international NGOs came to the opening of the new branch. There were speeches given by the CEO of T-O-M and guests, such as the Executive Director of AMA, Najib Samim, wishing success to the new office.

The new microfinance product “musharaka” was also presented today during the opening. According to the Executive Director of AMA, T-O-M is a first company to offer the musharaka product to afghan businesses and the first company who will put it into practice.  According to the practices of other countries, musharaka is the most suitable for the economy of developing countries such as Afghanistan. T-O-M’s musharaka product conditions and requirements are based according to the Sharia law. All T-O-M business development officers are trained on the new product and have already provided services to clients.

T-O-M, as a part of T-O-I, has social performance and social responsibly at the core of its mission. Subsequently, the T-O-M Social Performance Manager introduced guests to the Social Performance and Social Responsibility programs being implemented by T-O-M. Currently a Transition Home for orphan boys, Job placement services for widows and orphans, handicraft design business development, and disaster relief programs are being targeted in Kabul.

At the end of the event there were fresh pastries served and guests were given souvenirs to remember the event.

We are grateful to be able to help and serve more people in Afghanistan. We believe that everyone has a right to opportunities that improve their lives and each person can help someone to Improve his/her life.

Disaster Relief

Heartbreaking events take place everyday in, or near, places were T-O-I is working. Many innocent people fall victims of hurricanes, explosions, avalanches, mudslides, and earthquakes. It can happen to anyone at any time, as it all comes down to being in the wrong place at the wrong time.  For this reason the T-O-I team provides relief to those affected by these disasters.

The T-O-I disaster Relief team volunteers consist of selfless T-O-I staff members and selfless volunteers who understand the blessing of being available to help others stricken by such untimely events. Our Disaster Relief program director is in constant contact with the Governments and Ministries on how T-O-I can serve and help the communities we work in.   Our main objective with the Disaster Relief Program is to show compassion and love to those who need it most.

Distributed Relief items are based on the type of disaster and the immediate needs of the people.  All items are provided and given free of charge.  Anyone can volunteer to be a crewmember for T-O-I’s Disaster Relief Program, either by coming and physically participating or by financially contributing.

The T-O-I team in action

In August 2015, a vehicle filled with explosive material blew up in a residential area in Kabul, Afghanistan in the middle of the night.  Over 50 people died and more than 400 people were injured. On that day, our Disaster Relief team was on standby and ready to help.  We made runs to local shops, purchased nonperishable food items, packaged them up, and headed out to the disaster sight.  After visiting the sight and talking to area leaders our team found the greatest need was for food to be distributed to victims and their families.  Many victims and their families had been waiting for several hours to be treated at the local hospitals.  We visited three hospitals, handed out food, listened to people’s stories, and let them know we care.  UNICEF estimates that nearly 35,000 people were displaced and residing in cloth tents in refugee camps around Kabul.

Until it happens, no one knows how much it means to have the help of someone who cares.  T-O-I is proud of the Disaster Relief team for their selfless dedication to serving others in the time of desperate need.

disaster-relief

 

 

 

 

 

Orphan Graduate Transition Homes

One globally overlooked at risk group are Orphan Graduates. These young boys and girls graduate the local orphanage and are sent out to fend for themselves.  When they “graduate” from the orphanage as teenagers, they have nowhere to go, nowhere to live, and no life skills to help them become independent.  As many as 60% of these girls find their way to prostitution, and as many of these boys turn to crime resulting in 70% of them serving time in prison.  These youth simply do not have options when they are forced to leave the protection of the orphanage.

Tikkun Olam International believes that when a child has a safe place to live, adequate food, and an education, they then have the means to become self-sustaining, they have hope, and they can stand on their own two feet.   For this reason, T-O-I is involved in establishing Transition Homes for Orphan Graduates.

A T-O-I Transition Home provides a safe place for adolescent boys or girls to develop into responsible young adults. These youth have mentors who work with them and help them to set the goal, and achieve them.  They are provided with food, hot and cold water for showers, comfortable beds, and a mentoring family environment.  They learn how to clean, cook, and care for their property as these basic life skills are many times not taught in the orphanage.

With the assistance of the T-O-I job placement program, all of the participants are required to find a full-time job.  T-O-I helps them to learn how to responsibly save money.  Upon their completion of the Transition Home program, they are accompanied by a mentor to purchase essential household items; with the money in their savings account.  Most participants enter the program with little more than the clothes on their backs. Yet when they leave they have not only clothes, and essential household items, they have a family to turn to, the life skills that they need, sustainable income, and hope for the future.

The Transition Home gives them hope and support for a better future, helps to demonstrate the power of education, and prevents the next generation from being lost to the street, prostitution and crime.

If you would like to meet some of the Transition Home program participants, you can read about them at http://t-o-i.org/resources-2/latest-stories/

If you are interested becoming a Transition Home Mentor, please contact us at hello@t-o-i.org

If you are interested in financially contributing to the monthly support of the Transition Home, please contact us at http://t-o-i.org/one-time-contribution/