Here's How You Can Help Afghan Refugees

The UK government announced it plans to resettle 20,000 Afghan refugees and at least 5,000 in the first year. But what can you do to help?

We’ve all been shocked and heartbroken by the images and videos of people in Afghanistan desperately trying to flee the country as the Taliban has taken control.

The government has been heavily criticised for setting out a target of 20,000 refugees it plans to resettle in the UK.

So if you’ve been asking yourself what you can do to help Afghan refugees from the UK, we’ve got you covered.

Demonstrators protest in Parliament Square against Taliban and demand human rights in Afghanistan as MPs hold a debate on the crisis.
Barcroft Media via Getty Images
Demonstrators protest in Parliament Square against Taliban and demand human rights in Afghanistan as MPs hold a debate on the crisis.

Caroline Haworth is the CEO of Womankind Worldwide, a UK charity working with women’s rights organisations globally. She says she’s especially worried about the “rapidly evolving” situation in Afghanistan and says the government needs to do more to help women at risk.

She suggests some ways in which people can help.

1. Do your research

Learning more about the history of the country and the ongoing situation from trusted sources can help you to understand better what’s going on.

It also means you’ll be able to help educate friends and family who speak to you about Afghanistan and what’s happening there.

Try one of our very own explainers to start with by clicking here.

“Extraordinarily courageous women human rights defenders - who have been at the forefront of the fight - are now exposed, unprotected and at very high risk.”

- Caroline Haworth, CEO of Womankind Worldwide

2. Amplify voices from Afghanistan

Womankind Worldwide recommend finding local voices on social media who you can support.

“Listen to voices of women on the ground. Amplify the voices of Afghan feminists through social media.”

Caroline says it’s especially important to amplify the voices of Afghan women because of the threat to women’s rights in the country.

3. Call on your your MP

By writing to your MP, they have the ability to put more pressure on the UK government to do more to help Afghan refugees.

Caroline recommends to include in your letter that Afghan women, activists, and negotiators should not be left out of any resettlement plans by the UK.

A group of protesters against the Taliban take over of Afghanistan gather in Parliament Square.
Dan Kitwood via Getty Images
A group of protesters against the Taliban take over of Afghanistan gather in Parliament Square.

4. Attend a demonstration

You can join in a local demonstration to show solidarity with a larger group of the public on how you feel about the government’s handling of the situation in Afghanistan.

Attending public events can visibly show the government how many people care about what’s going on.

5. Look into what organisations in Afghanistan are doing

Womankind Worldwide recommend checking out some other women’s rights organisations they work with who are sharing important information:

They’ve also worked with a number of organisations on the ground in Afghanistan that are especially trying to help women include:

  • Afghan Women’s Resource Centre (AWRC)

  • Afghan Women’s Network (AWN)

  • Humanitarian Assistance for the Women and Children of Afghanistan (HAWCA)

Children demonstrating in Parliament Square as MPs hold a debate on the crisis in Afghanistan.
Barcroft Media via Getty Images
Children demonstrating in Parliament Square as MPs hold a debate on the crisis in Afghanistan.

The UK government also have advice available on how to help refugees coming to the UK. It includes giving to charity, volunteering with certain relief agencies, and offering community support like teaching English or offering a place to stay.