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Frequently Asked Questions


What does the word “hoshyar” mean?

In Urdu and related languages, it means “smart, intelligent, aware” and “on the ball.”


Is the Hoshyar Foundation affiliated with any religious or political organization?

No, it is completely secular and apolitical.


Why does Hoshyar focus on educating girls in Pakistan?

Girls tend to drop out after primary school, usually because after that age boys and girls are prohibited to study together and there are very few schools solely for girls. Secondary schooling for girls keeps the door open for futures beyond early marriage and lifelong domesticity.


How many schools does Hoshyar support?

In 2016, Hoshyar supports 11 schools.


How many girls has Hoshyar helped to attend school?

Hoshyar has helped more than 1000 girls attend school.


How does Hoshyar work with the communities it serves?

We respond to community proposals and support their efforts through local non-governmental organizations (NGOs).


Which school costs does Hoshyar provide?

Tuition, salaries for teachers and staff, books, uniforms, utilities, transportation, furniture and equipment, and special events.


How does Hoshyar oversee the operation of the schools it sponsors?

The Executive Director visits the schools regularly and works closely with the local NGOs, who monitor each school and report back to us monthly.


What subjects are taught in the schools?

Compulsory subjects are math, science, social studies, Urdu, English, art and Islamics. Some students are able to study Punjabi and computer training in high school.


What kinds of extra-curricular activities are made possible by Hoshyar?

Medical treatment, annual school outings, computer study, and monthly bookmobile visits to the school.


How does Hoshyar ensure that teachers are well-trained?

Hoshyar sponsors teacher training workshops and underwrites the costs of professional development programs for teachers pursuing higher degrees.


What is the difference between formal education and literacy training?

Formal education (K-10) includes the compulsory subjects listed above, following a standardized curriculum set by the government. Students are in class for about six hours per day. Literacy training uses a different set of materials and is designed for working girls and women. Classes are held after work for two hours a day.


What is the impact of Hoshyar’s literacy projects?

Students who complete literacy and numeracy training gain the ability to read and write, to understand the charges on their bills and pay them themselves, to read and sign contracts for piecework, and to read signs and participate with greater confidence in the world outside their home and neighborhood. They make sure their children are literate and send them to school.


How important is female education to rural families?

Rural families rely on any member who can read and write to help them negotiate the outside world.  Educated women marry later, bear fewer and healthier children, and educate their children. This is true for rural as well as urban families. However, it can be difficult to sacrifice the labor of school-going girls, and this is why some rural families do not want to send their girls to school.


How is Hoshyar staffed?

Hoshyar is operated entirely by volunteers in the U.S. who work directly with local partners in Pakistan.


How can I donate to Hoshyar?

You can donate by PayPal or EFT on our website, or send a check to our post office box.


What is the relationship between the Hoshyar Foundation and Kilimania?

Hoshyar is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt nonprofit organization. Kilimania: Fine and Tribal Rugs from Afghanistan is an independent, for-profit business which donates its profits to Hoshyar.