How can we solve this problem

Dec 17, 2012   //   by Bahauddin   //   Uncategorized  //  3 Comments

How can we solve this problem

Today I was announced best speaker in our debate train­ing arranged by IEFS. I was oppo­si­tion leader on the issue of, is gov­ern­ment oblig­ated to lessen the gap between rich and poor? As the train­ing ended I didn’t leave the cen­ter with cher­ish­ing mem­ory of my suc­cess but with a ques­tion on my mind.
In the end of the class every­body was talk­ing about learn­ing pay which is about to. I dis­cov­ered that each of the stu­dents is paid 500AFs ($10) for each class they attend. I was happy with this I will be able to return half of the money that I bor­rowed from my friend. But I also didn’t approve the idea of pay­ing in train­ing like this. Because you can­not find learner’s with a real desire to learn. In this kind of train­ings you have two options to 1st Get edu­ca­tion 2nd Earn money?
I first faced this sit­u­a­tion when an expat wanted to train some doc­tors in pub­lic health hos­pi­tal. I was help­ing him arrange this train­ing. We could not get the doc­tors to attend this unless we pay so finally the expat doc­tor agreed to pay. This train­ing in Nan­garhar, we paid 500 AFN($10) per day to par­tic­i­pants who work in Jalal­abad (who still col­lected their reg­u­lar salary) and 1500 AFN per day to par­tic­i­pants from out­side Jalal­abad (those com­ing from out­side the province got five days of pay for a three day train­ing, because they were paid for two travel days). This money is called a “per diem” and it is com­mon inter­na­tion­ally when some­thing for your job requires you to be out of town, but uncom­mon while you’re in your own town. Our part­ners help­ing to orga­nize the train­ing felt that our per diems were very low. One of the pri­mary doc­tors coor­di­nat­ing the train­ing left before the final day because he had an oppor­tu­nity to go to another train­ing in Kabul with a higher per diem (I believe it may have been $90 a day). This is a very nor­mal part of the rou­tine of doc­tors who work with the min­istry of pub­lic health.
When I landed in Kabul inter­na­tional report after return­ing from World inno­va­tion sum­mit. I run into an acquainted pro­fes­sor in the air­port who was going to Japan for train­ing in edu­ca­tion. The sec­ond ques­tion he asked after where am I com­ing from, was how much am I paid. I had no answer but I sim­ply said I spend $8 by mis­tak­enly drink­ing a red-bull in the hotel room. This was another sit­u­a­tion that poked same ques­tion in my mind is he going to Japan to learn or to earn? I noticed he didn’t believe that I am not paid, and this ques­tion is what most peo­ple have asked since I am back in the coun­try.
I think this is not NGOs or peo­ples mis­take. We have been in war for over 30 years; we needed relief in refugee camps and war torn vil­lages. This is what most Afghans have learnt because since they are born they always needed help in their life. Major­ity of the cur­rent Afghan pop­u­la­tion has lived in war. On the flip side help­ing for too long also devel­ops a ten­dency in once per­son­al­ity to expect from oth­ers. This sit­u­a­tion can also effect the pop­u­la­tion which can’t help the coun­try to revive and be self-reliant. Edu­ca­tion is still a major chal­lenge in Afghanistan and very much needed. I have noticed both prob­lems lack of edu­ca­tion and prob­lem of expect­ing from orga­ni­za­tions. Edu­ca­tional pro­grams can­not enroll stu­dents if they are not paid.
Should money be given to peo­ple for learn­ing, if yes how can we avoid devel­op­ing a ten­dency in them to desire for money in learn­ing ?
This is ques­tion for orga­ni­za­tions and pol­icy mak­ers that they should think of. The world is still going through war and crisis.

  • Suzanne Kathro

    I see the dilemma. My hope would be (although it doesn’t seem to be hap­pen­ing) that if you paid peo­ple to attend edu­ca­tion classes they might get inspired and under­stand the value of learn­ing and improv­ing them­selves. That fact that your coun­try has been at war for so long adds a cul­tural dynamic that’s dif­fi­cult to over­come. There needs to be a change in mind­set and I’m not quite sure how to make that happen.

    You ask very good ques­tions that make me think.

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  • Folker Pfen­nig

    Dear Bahaud­din Sahib,

    as a for­mer teacher at a voca­tional school in Ger­many I am very much aston­ished about your describ­ing your “prob­lem” by using your own words:

    But I also didn’t approve the idea of pay­ing in train­ing like this. Because you can­not find learner’s with a real desire to learn. In this kind of train­ings you have two options to 1st Get edu­ca­tion 2nd Earn money?”

    By ask­ing the ques­tion at the end of those words of a shocked atti­tude against this unbe­liev­able sit­u­a­tion in post war Afghanistan you give us the hid­den solu­tion of your “problem”.

    In my eyes the whole national admin­is­tra­tion must work out a reg­u­la­tion for the fur­ther edu­ca­tion of all med­ical staff (includ­ing all med­ical doctors).

    The premises of this admin­is­tra­tive reg­u­la­tion must be:

    1. All med­ical staff must attend courses to achieve bet­ter knowl­edge in med­ical treat­ment.
    2. After each class they attend they must pass an exam­i­na­tion to get a cer­tifi­cate.
    3. The stu­dents of the dif­fer­ent classes will only get their grat­i­fi­ca­tion, if they pos­sess the right certificates.

    Every­body who does not want to get fur­ther edu­cated will never get any addi­tional grat­i­fi­ca­tion from the admin­is­tra­tion. But this pas­sive atti­tude against fur­ther edu­ca­tion can only be solved halfway by per­ma­nent pub­lic­ity man­age­ment of the government.

    It is not the time to ask good ques­tions but to solve them for a bet­ter edu­cated Afghanistan.