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California’s Rebuilding Afghanistan Summit Focuses on Reconstruction

Afghanistan’s continuing reconstruction was the subject of a November 4 conference that brought together over 20 west coast NGOs and non-profits at California State University (East Bay). The fourth annual “Rebuilding Afghanistan Summit” included presentations by many grassroots organizations that are actively building school and clinics, training teachers and health care workers, removing landmines, and providing micro-lending, job training and educational programs in Afghanistan. “Bay Area residents have a passion for global peace and world cultures,” said Summit organizer Masood Sattari. “The Rebuild Afghanistan Summit will give many the occasion to hear from people involved in a country that can really use their help.”

The Keynote speaker for the program was Mr. Nake Kamrany, a leading Afghan economist with the University of Southern California. Despite citing numerous challenges, he expressed optimism in regard to Afghanistan’s future. "I can guarantee that within this century, Afghanistan will become prosperous,” he said.

The Embassy was represented at the conference by Education and Health Officer, Ms. Awista Ayub. Ms. Ayub spoke about the importance of the NGO community working together to achieve broad goals on a macro-scale rather than working separately and competitively.  She also spoke about the importance of voting for the Afghan-American community in the States.  “Afghans showed up in the millions for the first democratic elections in history, and we owe it to them to show up and vote for our own elected representatives – it is our civic duty here as much as it is their civic duty in Afghanistan,” she said.

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