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Promoting Peace & Prosperity through Local Carts

Carts on the move alleviate poverty.

Photo of Hassan
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Explain your project idea (2,000 characters)

The poor get poorer & the rich get richer because you need money to make money. This practice is harsher in Afghanistan than anywhere else due to instability & insecurity. In Afghanistan, over 10 million people live in poverty. They do not have the basic & necessary means to live a life. The lack of jobs, income, & deteriorating security is giving rise to a number of homeless people, beggars, & thieves; & most importantly, these jobless & homeless people are becoming a prime & easy target for extremist groups such as Taliban & ISIS to hire them to carry out their malicious activities. People will do anything to provide for their families, even if it means using illegal ways or joining such insurgents. Solution: To create a platform where vetted & selected individuals are given customized carts with its required supplies to sell food or anything they want on the streets. Selling on streets will give them opportunity to earn money, to feed their families as street food has a big market in Afghanistan. It will also create a source of income for them, give self-confidence & deviate them from illegal activities. To ensure equality & transparency, we will involve local community and religious leaders to nominate individuals in need. Sustainability: These carts will be given as a loan. The initial 3 months will be to allow them to get started. After 3 months, when business picks up, they have to reimburse 1/4 of the cost of the mobile cart & supplies. Individuals have one year to reimburse the cost. In case, they are unable to pay, based on their need up to another year may be extended. This reimbursed non-profit income will be used to buy more carts & repeat the process with more individuals. Impact: To ensure success & impact each round of individuals will go through a one-week training in which they will explore what/how they want to do with the cart & the kind of cart they need. Bridge: Only when means of income is provide to citizens peace will prevail

Who are the beneficiaries? (1,000 characters)

Direct beneficiaries are the families of the selected individuals. Secondary beneficiaries are the community leaders and religious leaders who will help us nominate individuals in need; with this opportunity these respected community leaders can preach peace effectively & provide people in need with a hope, & an opportunity to earn an honest living. Another secondary beneficiary is the Gov't of Afghanistan. This project will play a key role in the economy boost, supply & demand & reduction of market prices and alleviation of proverty. Tertiary beneficiaries are the neighborhood & city. As this project provides an opportunity to a source of income, the individuals will not resort to the thought of joining the Taliban or ISIS.

How is your idea unique? (1,000 characters)

The unique selling point about this idea is that it is self-sustainable and equally serves men, women & youth. Other organizations are still exploring the theoretical side of peace, prosperity, & empowerment. At the end of the day conventions, meetings, or trainings can't provide families with food. The aim of the project is to provide the individuals with means of income by giving them a customized cart and exploring with them in the one-week training on what/how to/not to do. The self-sustainability of the project ensures high supply of material in the market resulting alleviation of poverty & huge boost in the Afghan economy. Approach: decade long presence in the society, our solid network, up to date research & situational analysis, economic & market analysis, Gender specialists, & Post-war Reconstruction & Development specialists makes us a strong team in successfully implementing the project.

Idea Proposal Stage (choose one)

  • Prototype: I have done some small tests or experiments with prospective users to continue developing the idea.

Tell us more about your organization/company (1 sentence and website URL)

Organization: Afghan Women's Organization for Supporting Democracy. We work for women empowerment, economic empowerment, capacity building, peace building, post-war reconstruction & development. We were actively involved in the Afghanistan Peace and Reintegration Process (APRP) with training and mentoring women on how they can engage in the process effectively. Content development for website & media platforms are underway.

Expertise in sector

  • 7+ years

Organization Filing Status

  • Yes, we are a registered non-profit.

In 3-4 sentences, tell us the inspiration or story that encouraged you to start this project.

Struck in traffic jam, on one side of my car in a dangerous intersection a woman in burqa holding a kid not older than 1 year was begging the drivers; on the other side a young man holding a pan with burning herbs in them & circles cars to deviate their bad energy for 10 cents. Whereas on the sidewalk was an elderly man with a cart selling ice-cream. During this traffic no one helped the woman or the young man but multiple cars called on the man & bought ice-creams. That's when it inspired me.

Please explain how your selected topic areas are influenced, in the local context of your project (1,000 characters).

Bridging peace and prosperity: Peace cannot be attained without prosperity. In the context of Afghanistan it is rather complicated as peace is impacted by prosperity; here lack of prosperity resorts to insurgency, therefore, insurgency influences peace. To break this vicious cycle we are focusing on prosperity in order to influence peace. Our project will help people making a living to avoid joining the insurgents for their money. As a result, the people & their family earning money & becoming prosperous, peace will be positively influenced.

Who will work alongside your organization in the project idea? (1,000 characters)

Partner: SHOOBINC; Women Community leaders, Religious Community leaders SHOOBINC will help us with media, graphics, market analysis & consumer behavior to promote the project and conduct impact assessment & make market &economy-based required predictions. The Community Leaders, who are respected & well known in their communities & aware of their communities will help us with the nomination of the individuals. They will connect us with the needy. Moreover the Community leaders will promote the project & its objective towards peace in their regular gatherings. For example we involved religious & women community leaders in Afghanistan Peace Rehabilitation Process. During the trainings, religious leaders helped us with the presenting light touches of religious verses to make people understand & women leaders do the same & would bring up examples of various community matters as examples to convince the women of their role & influence on family members & the peace process.

Please share some of the top strengths identified in the community which your project will serve (500 characters)

Top five strengths in the community are resilience, willing to participate and contribute in community social & cultural reconstruction & development, and confidence to execute local trade and business, & the willingness to learn & give it their best to alleviate poverty & change their circumstances.

Geographic Focus

Afghanistan--Kabul and Nangarhar.

How many months are required for the project idea? (500 characters)

24 months

Did you submit this idea to our 2017 BridgeBuilder Challenge? (Y/N)

  • No

1 comment

Join the conversation:

Photo of Kumail Hassan

Afghanistan is a war-affected country since 1970. Women being a weaker gender is affected most, this initiative will help them in their economic uplift.