What the Ascend Girls are Doing During Quarantine
We asked the girls of Ascend the following questions about how they are dealing during quarantine in Kabul. Here were their responses:
What does Kabul feel like right now?
“Kabul [was] known as one of the most polluted cities of the world, but nowadays there is fresh weather to breathe. But there is no sign of quarantine here and no change in situation. There are few people who are in quarantine [but] not most of them. I wish people felt the value [of staying home]” - Habiba
“The environment is quite clean and it is a good thing because it showed us that the earth is finally able to breathe while people are not around.”- Nilofar
“I feel good in Kabul, but I can't do some of my own work because I don't have as many quarantine facilities.” - Mahnoz
“We have had an amazing life before the coronavirus but we weren't thankful for it, but the coronavirus has shown us a different lifestyle without all the beauties of [the outdoors] that we didn't care too much about and now we are missing all those joys more than ever before.” - Mina
“I think Kabul is very scared these days. Because we don't have many facilities for treating patients who are facing corona[virus], and this increase in mortality has frightened people.” - Prawn
“While Kabul is quarantined, very few people are quarantined in their homes. Neither the government nor the people themselves pay much attention to the situation. They went to the mountains for fun because of good weather and [do not] take the virus seriously.” - Nazia
What are you doing to stay busy?
“Since the doctors and my family have recommended to stay home, I stay home to read books and do painting. I recommend you do not go out, but if you go out, use a mask and gloves. Also use hand sanitizer when you come back home. Stay safe and healthy.” - Hadeia
“Painting, helping family, learning a new language, learning to do knots, learning new info about different things, learning guitar, new pieces and melodies, reading books…” - Nilofar
“I have a sports plan, I am committed and honest with myself and my teammates. I divide my time so that I have two days of yoga a week and two days of fitness. Still studying abroad and studying myself and English.” - Zargona
“For the past two months, I have been trying my best to be with my family so that we can support each other spiritually and spend our time happier and more productively.”- Breshna
“My daily plan includes yoga, fitness, reading books, watching movies, online classes, and learning handicrafts such as weaving and stitching. I do yoga for one hour every night with my sister before the night meal, which is from 8-9 pm.” - Sughra
“I am spending my time by practicing fitness and climbing at the office because I live very close, and can walk over even during the lockdown. I am also practicing this in my house as well as studying and doing housework"..” - Mahnoz
“I'm busy with housework at home, doing Ascend’s programs, reading books, and doing Facebook, and I still have extra time to do extra work.” - Nazia
“Honestly I am enjoying my quarantine time. I have read so many wonderful books, I try to learn how to cook because I don't know how to cook yet.” - Mina
“I have a division of time to be busy at home, where I work every day for hours, I work less yoga because unfortunately I don't know much. [Other than that,] I am cooking, studying, and watching movies with my family.” - Parwana
Some of the girls updating Ascend on how they're keeping busy!
What do you miss the most about being together?
“Ascend trips showed me lots of feelings. It made me physically and mentally powerful, and I do miss Hussnia’s classes, [Thursday] hiking days and yoga…” - Nilofar
“When I'm in Ascend, I don't miss anything, but I get a lot from Ascend’s plans. Exercise can strengthen my body and keep me healthy.” - Nazia
“Ascend was and still is one of my favorite places to go. I really miss all the girls of Ascend and the interesting time that we had together.” - Mina
“Ascend is where I have learned the real meaning of working for a team and being a leader. First when I joined here I couldn’t attend many other programs and my classes. First even my family was telling me why you are attending there when you know you miss lots of things. But when they saw me doing new things every day and improving [they are] happy that I am with Ascend.” - Habiba
Photos from the Winter Sports Festival in Bamyan. Apart from ice climbing, many of the girls of Ascend spent their time together at their basecamp. Many of the girls are multi-talented; some can play the guitar, while others are great at singing.
What is Afghanistan doing to prevent spreading the virus?
“Because this is a global virus and we must comply with quarantine, we must stay in our homes. Afghanistan does not have many health facilities.” - Mahnoz
“People and the government are trying their best to stop the virus from spreading. I am so proud of the doctors in the hospitals of Kabul, Afghanistan and in all around the world because [they’re] risking their lives. I am [also] thankful for those volunteer workers that provide the poor people's needs during this time, [since] they can't get out of their houses to find money for providing their needs. [A] special thanks to my brother who is one of the volunteer workers and it's 5 days that he is working from 7a.m to 7 p.m for disseminating health care [goods] and foods for poor families.” - Mina
“Afghanistan is planning to create a quarantine plan to prevent corona[virus]. Second, spraying roads and cars, commercials on television and social media, sharing masks for people, and advising on what to do to prevent corona.” - Parwana