Welcome to our Web site.PARSA is a small, non-government organization (NGO) working directly with needy people of Kabul, Afghanistan, particularly widows, who are on the streets begging, and those who have "fallen through the cracks" of the survey nets of the big NGOs. Its aim and goal are to find work and/or develop skills so that these people can partly or wholly support themselves and their families. It works in a direct personal way to locate widows and to help them. It is now registered as a charitable corporation in the State of Arizona, USA., and recognised by the IRS as a 501(c)3 charitable corporation.
With the ever increasing number of cars and trucks in fast moving Kabul and with the addition of many gas and deisel powered generators making electric day and night, air pollution has become of great concern. This has given Mary a dual purpose in her efforts to establish a base of operations in the very needy areas in the center of Afghanistan. Panjao in Bamiyan province has the resource potential for handicaft production, has the definite need for trained physical therapists, and certainly a need for income generation projects. So for the present she is actively commuting between bustling and smog-ridden Kabul and the clean, but thin (at over 8000' elevation) air of Panjao. 12 January 05 --Email from Mary in Kabul Taher and I just rolled into Kabul this morning from Panjao, which, up to yesterday was about as isolated as one could get - the UNAMA email stopped connecting about 10 days ago, and a week of snow closed all the roads. Snow has to stop sometime and this did, finally. Then it took days of efforts from shovellers and lorries mashing the snow down to travellability so that the Flying Coach drivers could get up their nerve to embark on the trip - now a day and a quarter - have to spend the night at Siah Khak, just over the lip of Unai Kotal and down a ways. No snow in Kabul!! We were all surprised.
One of Mary's and PARSA's earliest endeavors to help Afghan women make a living was in the production and marketing of Afghan handicafts.
For a long time maketing was a sometime thing -- a shop in Kabul was impossible under the taliban, exports to the USA were irregular.
Through the efforts of several former Peace Corps Volunteers and their families and friends, things are moving.
As American distributer of PARSA Crafts, Jane Willard in the frigid Twin Cities of Minnesota, is organizing events,
seeking retail distributers around the counry, and esablishing a web site to show off the handicrafts and invite orders.