Central Asia Institute: What Do They Do?


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Central Asia Institute is a non-profit organization dedicated to improving education and literacy in rural parts of Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Tajikistan, particularly among girls. Mortenson was named director of the Central Asia Institute (CAI) by Mortenson and Hoerni in 1996. Hoerni, however, would not live to see the group develop into a global humanitarian movement. Mortenson will devote the next two years to the foundation after Hoerni passed in 1997 of myelofibrosis, a severe type of cancer. Mortenson will co-founder Three Cups of Tea, a description of his adventures in Pakistan, many years later CAI was founded. CAI was pushed into the international agenda by the book, which became a New York Times strongest seller, as well as its sequel, Stones into Schools, which gave the organization a formidable platform to campaign for peace by education. CAI ultimately transform the lives of tens of millions of people, even though Hoerni and Mortenson had no idea when they founded the organization. CAI’s activities and projects have grown into additional remote areas of Afghanistan, Tajikistan, and Pakistan during the past two decades, most of which are too risky or secluded for other groups to approach. CAI has indeed been effective in these sectors because it believes that the greatest way to achieve long-term, broad change is to launch programs that are demanded by the community, rather than telling people what they want and need.

The organization has started over 400 initiatives to date, and lots of new support requests arrive on their tables every day. They are excited to take on these new projects because they believe that education is the surest way to peace. They can transform the world one child per family through education.

Women’s Empowerment

Education empowers people, promotes progress and opportunity, also countering fear and ignorance. The Central Asia Institute works to improve access to quality education in Pakistan, Tajikistan, and Afghanistan three regions where it’s needed.

For more than two decades, we’ve worked in places where few NGOs have gone before, in which there are mostly no roads, schools, or hopes. We begin at the very end of the journey, with the most vulnerable communities. Their approaches reject conventional wisdom in favor of practical solutions that make a meaningful difference.

Every community faces unique educational challenges, as well as a one-size-fits-all solution will not work. They’ve established a range of programs over the decades to fulfill the demands that regular programs may not be able to meet. School construction, scholarships, literacy, vocational training for older women,  health and access to clean water, and other initiatives are among them. As fueling the growth, so do their demands, and they are prepared to assist them.

Although the Central Asia Institute’s initiatives benefit both girls and boys, they have discovered that concentrating on girls has the most impact. Girls and women who have received schools are more likely to pass on what they have learned to their families, children, and societies.

Regrettably, such women or girls might find it much more difficult than their male colleagues to obtain an education.

A well-educated girl is much less likely to marry as a kid or die young, that her family will be healthy as a result. With each year of education she completes, she can contribute to lifting her people out of poverty. The well-being of the entire society increases if females are educated.