I started a photography career in my university course of social science, where I focused on projects about women’s issues. The World Bank then offered me a scholarship to study technical aspects of photography. Now I had the thirst for photography, so I joined Cardon University where I studied it full-time. Then I was selected to join the one-year course in photojournalism at Aïna Photo. Now I work there as a freelance photographer and started the first net-café for women in Kabul University.

This 12-year-old girl cleans car windows to make money for her family, who can’t afford to send her to school. She earns about 300 afghanis each day ($6 U.S.). Words and photos by Safya Saify/Courtesy of Aïna Photo/Afghanistan.

During the holy month of Ramadan, a 30-year-old woman begs in Kabul to buy food for her children. 2005.

Small gangs of boys beg for money on the streets as part of a group run by adults. The boys are given sleeping pills in the day and left to sleep while people throw money in their hats. At the end of the day the “boss” comes along and collects the money. The children become addicted to pharmaceutical drugs and are dependent on the bosses to survive. 

An Afghan student dresses in traditional Pashtun dress and makeup. After the fall of the Taliban, women are able to express their gender more freely than before.

The Afghan Women’s Garden was founded by the Ministry of Women to provide a safe and private place for women to practice sports. They have facilities for sports such as volleyball, basketball, football, tae kwon do and karate.

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