My School in Jawzjan

Editor’s note: Jawzjan province is in northern Afghanistan, bordering Turkmenistan.

Five years ago I never dreamed that I would open a private school. But now I own a school where we have 120 students and there will be more in the coming year, enshallah.

I was in the second year at the university in Kabul in 2007 when the school idea came into my mind.

My mother had a private school in Pakistan when we lived there, but after 22 years we came back to Afghanistan where I finished my 12th grade in Jawzjan. I knew I had to do something that would help my family financially and also be of assistance to society. I came up with the idea of a school because we all witnessed the bad education system in Afghanistan.

At first I got a lot of promises for grants from organizations to help with the school. I was very happy and collected money and, at last, on the 9th of April 2009 we opened the school. But some of the promises were not real. We had funds for six months.

I asked help from some embassies. I was so sad because we did not want to close the school the next year. Suddenly my family members found great jobs and were able to help me keep the school open.

We continued to try to find funding for the school because my family could not help us forever. But I also realized that if we try ourselves and don’t wait for others we can get where we want.  After a difficult time we got a grant opportunity. In October 2010 I went to the United States as an Afghan businesswoman and received my first grant.

After two years, I am now managing the school and every day we have many students coming to ask for admission. It gives me inspiration and I want to do more for my province. I would like to provide free education, but can’t. We charge just $15 per month, but some students can’t even pay that.

Life can be hard, but we have to manage. In my life I have learned that if we try more than once, we can get where we want to be.

By Maryam A.

Photo taken in Jawzjan province by Susan Marx


  1. Dominic D. says:

    Maryam, as a current student, I believe your passion for education is truly inspiring. Despite your setbacks and misfortunes, you continued to to push for your school, which is something very special. It is obvious that you sincerely care for your society. I hope you may one day find enough funding to provide the free education that you wish to give.

  2. Nicole D says:

    Mayram, this is an inspiring story. The way you wrote this allowed me to feel as though I was right there with you. I felt as though I was experiencing the same frustrations and joys you did. It’s refreshing you had the desire to not only help yourself and your family, but the people around you. As a result, you’re creating a better place for people today and establishing a better foundation for tomorrow. Best of luck in your endeavors, please keep us updated!


  3. Dylan D. says:

    Your perseverance is an inspiration to your students and students around the globe. It is definitely a fact of life that if you want something, you have to go out and reach for it. Your writing is powerful, and really gives a sense of the difficulties you faced and how you overcame them. Your story and your eagerness to give back to your community through education is incredible and well-written, and I hope your school continues to pave a bright future for all the students involved.

  4. Nicole A.D. says:


    Your story is so amazing. Your writing made me feel your disappointment and happiness with you. So many people would have given up when they hit such big obstacles, but you showed so much strength by persevering. I’m so glad you were able to get the resources to keep your school open. Your students are surely inspired by you and I hope you are able to continue providing education for a long time. I can’t wait to read more about your experiences!

  5. Debra D. says:

    Maryam, I applaud you on your efforts to open a school. It is such an influential opportunity to educate others and spread knowledge. I know plenty of individuals in the world who take their education for granted. Your story highlights the value of education: it enriches a community, gives people insight on life and helps foster improvement and progress. Congratulations on your accomplishments. I wish you the best for your school and hope you can continue to achieve your dreams.

  6. Brianna D. says:

    Maryam, you are truly an inspiration! Opening up that school must have had such a positive effect on the community! I really enjoyed the way you told your story, and your English is fantastic!

  7. Maryam, your story of starting the school, the setbacks and triumphs, is powerful. I would love to hear more about the school, and you.

  8. Maryam Amini says:

    Dear all,

    I really would like to say thanks from your respectful comments. Its give me power to write more about my school. I will write but it tooks a little time might be 2 weeks or less than that because in these days my sister had Appendix operation and I have to manage home, patient, splings and school all, as my mother went to Pakistan so I am the elder at home to busy but I will write.

    Love to all

  9. JESS D says:

    Maryam, your story is truly inspiring. I am amazed by your determination and passion for creating an educational opportunity for those who are less fortunate. You should be very proud for your accomplishment in bringing this school together. I would also love to hear more about your school and how it is doing. You have done a great thing and I wish the best for you and your school.

  10. The story is very inspiring how when you were in collage and that idea came to you. And it actually happened, you got your wish. you also said that your school had 120 kids going to it. the school I used to go to had around 900 kids! I hope one day that you can have 900 kids that would be excellent.

  11. wow that is very exciting that you have started a school. good work. But how do you keep it going. please get to me soon. It will be great see what’s going into the school

  12. This story is a great story and it has good feeling to it, I loved it!

  13. Maryam, I want to congratulate you on the opening of your school. I hope that you do well and that the girls who attend are inspired by your bravery to keep learning. With education and knowledge, they can hope for something better and that is the first step toward making it happen.

  14. Maryam Amini says:

    Dear All agian,

    Thank you very much from your comments it helps me to write more but I need a little time.
    Dear Daniel,

    exactlly I dont know too by know we are receving 12$ per students which helps us to keep going on the school but I am talking with people to support one or two girl who are willling to join our school but can affort. i am trying for that girls but still not success. I hope I can find someone, I hope so.

    Thanks from your interst.

  15. Zach Krapf says:

    Often kids who are more fortunate don’t acknowledge how much they are given to be able to learn. They should swap places with those who can’t get an education. They don’t deserve it.

  16. Virginia says:

    I found your story to be very inspiring. I like that you took your inspiration to help others and your desire for a better educational system and rolled them into one large idea. I think that it’s wonderful that students are accepted no matter how much they can afford to pay. I hope that the school continues to run for years in the future. Keep up the good work!

  17. Talia C says:

    Maryam, I’m so glad to have read that you’ve been able open up your school and have been persistent to achieve your goal! Your story is not only inspirational to your readers or students, but undoubtedly to women around the world and in Afghanistan who have felt the heavy resistance of not being permitted a good education. You are a perfect figure to look up to when it comes to not letting anything stand in the way of pursuing a dream. You have already achieved so much and I am confident that your school will thrive. Best wishes to you, your students, teachers, and school.

Speak Your Mind