Social Institutions Department

The Social Institutions Department (SID) works to bolster and advocate support in the arenas of public health, education, higher education, and women’s affairs by assisting governmental and nongovernmental entities in both the U.S. and Afghanistan. The Department serves to connect relevant individuals and entities and to create opportunities for mutually beneficial relationships that will support these vital aspects of Afghan society. Since basic human needs must be met as a first priority in the order of state building, the SID creates support for education and public health, especially for women, in order to reduce disease, poverty and illiteracy.

The SID works closely with its counterparts in Afghanistan to ensure that its work aligns properly with each respective Ministry. The SID has worked in close collaboration with the Ministry of Public Health, Ministry of Higher Education, Ministry of Women’s Affairs and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The SID also works with a number of think tanks, NGOs and academic institutions based in Afghanistan and the U.S. to address key issues relating to Afghanistan. The Department fosters relationships with organizations, schools and individuals who have an interest in improving the Afghan education system, as well as promoting the creation and sustenance of programs and institutions that address the specific needs of women and children.

Recent accomplishments include initiating an Afghanistan lecture series with the South Asian Studies Department of the Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies; strengthening bilateral relations between the U.S. and Afghanistan through the first U.S.-Afghan Strategic Partnership meeting in March 2006 on issues relating to governance; hosting roundtable events with the Minister of Public Health, Minister of Women’s Affairs, and board members of the newly established American University of Afghanistan; working closely with the Georgetown University Afghan Reconstruction Initiative in placing interns in the Ministry of Public Health; and playing a key role in organizing the first Mental Health Conference for Afghanistan in May 2006.