Warm greetings to you all. As we enter the holiday season and reflect upon this past year, I’d like to share some highlights of our work. The Hoshyar Foundation now supports over 500 students in six schools. Their ages range from 4 to 18 years, their class level from nursery to college prep, and we are proud to have 39 new high school graduates in 2013! With classes through 10th grade offered at all our schools, there will be many more graduates in the future.
Although conflict shapes the lives of too many people in the world, the children and communities aided by Hoshyar continue to conduct their daily lives in pursuit of education and prosperity. Our non-profit partners in Pakistan continue to develop productive relationships with each community and with the government. Hoshyar, together with Friends’ Welfare Association, expanded two abandoned girls’ middle schools into high schools and returned them to government support this year. We also converted a beautiful primary school in Bararkot village into a full-scale high school where classes are held in two shifts.
Probably the most exciting development in 2013 was that Hoshyar inaugurated higher secondary courses in four of our six schools. Twenty-four high school graduates in KPK are taking college prep classes in the humanities and sciences, and three new teachers have been hired. Scholarships for these courses are made possible by a donation from the Friends of Pakistan USA.
Hoshyar also completed a major construction project this year at the Al-Hamd school outside Lahore. Ten graduates are now taking college prep classes (Arts, Biology and Commerce) in the newly constructed classroom and science lab on the second floor. Al-Hamd also leads the village in high-profile community initiatives. A majority of the teachers pursue professional development through advanced degree programs locally. The Dastango Bookmobile continues to make its monthly visits, entertaining the children with enacted readings and operating a lending library. The Medical Vouchers Program, brainchild of Al-Hamd’s dedicated Vice-Principal, provides treatment for some 200 students and their families each month. Al-Hamd students also regularly receive new sweaters and shoes against the Punjab cold.
All these programs and initiatives are made possible by your support. For those who wish to make an end-of-year holiday gift, here’s what your donation can do:
$75 will keep one student in school and pay for her books and supplies.
$100 will add a uniform for a growing child.
$125 will buy her a sweater PLUS pay for her teachers’ advanced training.
Many of you have already made generous donations this year, and we thank you again and again. We will continue to do what we do for as long as we can, appreciating that your support is what makes it possible. It is a great privilege.