Local Clinic Saves Lives and Prevents Disease

April 13, 2015


Doctor Mastora explains to a mother how to use the medication that she's prescribed for her ill child.

Rumi Consultancy/World Bank

  • Small-scale rural development activities across the country are making a significant impact to the quality of lives of villagers.
  • These changes can be credited to the National Solidarity Program, the Government of Afghanistan’s flagship program, which is generating a sense of community ownership and social stability.
  • The program, which has seen roads, schools, and clinics being built, is supported by the World Bank and Afghanistan Reconstruction Trust Fund (ARTF) and enables communities to identify, implement, and monitor their own development projects.

SAYED AHMAD GHAZI VILLAGE, Kabul Province – Haji Mohammad Gul lost his first wife on a wintry night five years ago in their village of Sayed Ahmad Ghazi, in Kabul province.

“My wife was expecting,” Mohammad Gul recalls his first wife’s death. “We wanted to take her to a hospital in the city, because we didn’t have a health center here in our village, but we could not do it in time. Because of this, I lost the mother as well as the child.”

More recently, Mohammad Gul was thrilled to see his third child from his second wife safely delivered, with both mother and child healthy. He credits this success to the village’s newly built clinic, constructed as part of the National Solidarity Program (NSP). 


Doctor Soraya says that she vaccinates 3 to 4 children at the clinic everyday. 

Rumi Consultancy/World Bank

" We are thankful to the National Solidarity Program for taking care of us and building this clinic for us. It has changed our lives. "


Resident, Sayed Ahmad Ghazi Village


Ms. Nilofer's six months old child is being vaccinated so she can grow healthily. 

Rumi Consultancy/World Bank

NSP, which is the Government of Afghanistan’s flagship program, is in its third phase and aims at generating a strong sense of ownership and social stability. It aims to enhance service delivery and security through empowerment and development activities that communities themselves identify, plan, manage, and monitor.

Implemented by the Ministry of Rural Rehabilitation and Development (MRRD) since 2003, the NSP continues to receive funding from a number of donors, including the World Bank,  Afghanistan Reconstruction Trust Fund (ARTF), and Japanese Social Development Fund (JSDF).

Like the Sayed Ahmad Ghazi Community Development Council, NSP has established over 34,000 Community Development Councils (CDCs), democratically elected through secret ballot and mandated with governance responsibilities. The CDCs are proving to be an effective mechanism nationwide for ensuring equitable development, representing the rights and demands of over 18 million rural community members.

NSP and its 31 Facilitating Partners have worked through the CDCs to identify and implement some 86,000 small-scale reconstruction and development activities in the areas of water supply and sanitation, rural roads, irrigation, power, health, and education, as well as generated over 50 million paid-for-labor days for skilled and unskilled laborers.

Clinic provides basic health services

Once a clinic is built under the NSP, it is handed over to and managed by the Ministry of Public Health. The director of the new clinic here, Dr. Mastorah Ahmadi, 40, leads a staff of two women and a man, who provide basic health services to some 50 patients each day. “We have 12 rooms here and we provide many different services. We strive to solve the problems of patients as far as it is feasible here,” she explains.

About 1,400 families live in the village, which is situated 15 kilometers southeast of Kabul City. For years, families in the area faced enormous challenges in accessing health services. They decided to seek a sponsor to help them build a local clinic.

Through NSP, MRRD provided the villagers with a grant of more than $50,000 for the clinic. Local villagers also contributed $14,000 to better execute the program.

Noor Alam, 56, head of the CDC, has a household of 20 family members. He praises the program for helping to both treat many patients and prevent disease. “Before the local clinic, our children did not get the needed vaccinations,” he says. “As a result, they suffered from many different illnesses. Now the situation is completely different from how it used to be.”

Raana, 35, is at the clinic because her 18-month-old baby has caught the flu. She says that before the clinic was built, villagers treated their children at home, often through home remedies.

“We would boil some herbs or wait for someone to visit Kabul to get some medicine for our small kids,” she says. “We are thankful to the NSP for taking care of us and building this clinic for us. It has changed our lives.”