Afghanistan is one of the countries in the world the most severely contaminated by mines and explosive remnants of war. According to the Landmine Monitor, over 200 km2 of land is contaminated.
A man supported by Humanity & Inclusion to set up a shop | © J-P. Porcher / HI
HI has been working in Afghanistan since 1987. In 1996, the organisation built a rehabilitation centre in Kandahar which provides care for people with disabilities, including the victims of landmines. This centre provides physiotherapy care and is equipped with a workshop for producing prostheses and orthoses. Mobility aids (crutches, wheelchairs etc.) are also distributed from the centre. Thanks to a network of volunteers trained by HI, mine victims and all people with disabilities requiring care are referred to this centre.
Over time, HI has improved service provision and built the capacities of local actors, by helping the Afghan government to develop a study and training programme for rehabilitation professionals, and prosthetics and orthotics technicians, based on recognised international standards.
The projects underway also help local actors to promote the rights of people with disabilities, including the survivors of conventional weapons and improved explosive devices. The aim is to give them a voice to ensure that political leaders and/or organisations take into account their needs and are more likely to implement development projects.
Despite the support of the international community, Afghanistan is one of the poorest countries in the world. It is also one of the countries in the world which is most vulnerable to natural disasters and the most heavily contaminated with landmines.
Many people continue to suffer from insecurity, insalubrious housing and limited access to drinking water, electricity, medical care, education and employment.
In 2017, over 2,300 accidents involving mine, explosive devices or explosive remnants of war were reported. The majority of victims were civilians and half of them children.
The war, the insecurity due to day-to-day violence, and drought have forced 2.6 million Afghans into exile. Almost 1.5 million people have been internally displaced within the country and in 2016, over 600,000 left their homes.