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Afghanistan. ICRC cooperation program

24-07-2001 Operational Update

The ICRC Cooperation program   aims to strengthen the capacity of the Afghan Red Crescent Society (ARCS) in assisting the most vulnerable populations affected directly and indirectly by the conflict. The legal framework for the assistance was established when the ICRC, along with the Federation, signed General Agreement and Core Structure Agreement with ARCS. The ICRC has signed additional 7 bilateral agreements to support the ARCS to carry out their various programs through its nation-wide branch network. Those programs include such as relief activities and social programs, Food for Work (FFW) activities, dissemination activities and mine awareness project, tracing activities and vocational training activities.

In cooperation with the Red Cross Society of the Netherlands and the ARCS, 5 Marastoons (literally 'place of aid' ) are fully supported by the ICRC in their food and nonfood requirements. The ARCS offers such a shelter to the most vulnerable amongst the Afghan population. Widows and their children, orphans, physically handicapped and mentally ill find a place in one of the 5 Marastoons run by the ARCS. The Marastoon offers also education and a vocational training program for the children and the widows in order to enable their eventual return into the society. In February 2001 the Kabul Marastoon inaugurated a new residence which could provide shelter to an additional 40 families. The building was constructed with the funds made available by the South Korean Red Cross.

    

 Factsheet, June 2001