The principal applicant in this family was a security guard at a U.S. Army complex for Taliban prisoners. Unfortunately, his length of employment was one month too short to be eligible for a U.S. visa. This family was at significant risk—one brother was murdered and their mother and sister were shot when the Taliban attacked their home.
Task Force Nyx provided funding and logistical support to safely evacuate this family to a regional third country, and continued to provide financial sponsorship for dignified housing and living expenses, as well as prenatal care and the cost of a C-section for the birth of a daughter in late 2021.
In Spring 2022, Task Force Nyx helped secure Brazilian humanitarian visas for this family, who recently resettled in their new home country.
“Gul” was a prominent journalist in Afghanistan, and due to her advocacy for girls’ education and against child marriage, she experienced threats on her life long before the fall of Kabul. In autumn 2021, Gul became an early organizer of women’s rights protests in her conservative home province, rallying her friends and colleagues to join her in the streets and raise their voices for freedom from the country’s increasingly restrictive edicts. Unfortunately, Gul’s leadership role made her an immediate target. Her husband was arrested from his office and interrogated about her whereabouts, and during her darkest days, she noted, “I will die before I let them take me.” Gul and her family spent months in hiding before being able to safely transit to a third country. Recently, Gul received an offer of asylum in a Western country, and she and her family are preparing to begin their next chapter in peace and safety.
“My dear family, I don’t know how to thank you for your hard work. My children will grow up safe. I promise they will do a lot of good things for their new country and for the whole world. We can make everything possible, together.”
“This family came to us via an email outreach, which became a WhatsApp conversation, which carried through a harrowing journey to Pakistan, which blossomed into a deep friendship. We have learned many lessons through our work with this family, which have in turn shaped our case management approach. However, at the end of the day, our most important role is that of ‘aunties’ to their two beautiful children.”
Mrs. “U” is a women’s rights and media activist who was threatened and beaten due to her work. She holds a degree in law and, despite her young age, was active in Afghan civil society and nongovernmental work. Mrs. “U” has been followed and threatened at gunpoint, and her husband was arrested due to her work. She was a highly recognizable target for those seeking to suppress women’s voices. Despite these risks, she continued to advocate for the rights of women and girls, even holding protests in her own home.
Task Force Nyx safely evacuated the family to a neighboring country and is providing monthly support for their food and lodging. We are helping the family apply for asylum in several third countries.
“I saw many problems in life and we suffered a lot. You are my only friends who have always loved me, and you both understood me and worked with me. Thank you so much for everything.”
– Mrs. U
Prior to the fall of Kabul, “Fatima” worked as a parliamentary reporter and fixer for international news agencies operating in Afghanistan. In autumn of 2021, she took to the streets to advocate for women’s rights, helping to organize and lead more than a dozen protests. An outspoken activist, she appeared frequently in Afghan and international media, which also covered her story extensively when she was arrested and held in captivity for nearly two weeks. Upon her release from prison, Task Force Nyx helped Fatima and her family transit safely to a third country and advocated for their resettlement to numerous NGOs and governments. Happily, in late 2022, Fatima and her family received an offer of asylum from a Western country, and are waiting for their next chapter to begin.
“When I was released from prison, and there were still more threats against me and my family, no institutions and organizations cooperated with us, until Task Force Nyx helped. You made a lot of efforts for us financially, and physically helped us transfer to a safe place, for which we are indebted and grateful. You were by my side in the worst days, I will never forget.”
When we were introduced to “Lima,” she was in her third trimester of pregnancy, with no resources for her medical costs, and no durable pathway to asylum. She was also instantly one of the brightest, strongest people our team had ever met. A courageous women’s rights protester, Lima has evacuated safely to a third country–by choice leaving behind an extremely abusive husband. Now a mother of a beautiful infant, Lima is focused on her future, and spends her days studying English and supporting other Afghan refugees who are experiencing their own crucible moments. Task Force Nyx is funding ongoing care for some medical challenges the baby is experiencing. We are working in partnership with Lima to explore permanent pathways for her future. We believe she is capable of great things.
“Women can understand each other and feel the pain suffered by other women. And when we are a mother we feel this more deeply. We can feel how deeply you are supporting us, and we appreciate it. I am very excited by your sense of humanity. I shake your hands from a distance.”
In November 2021, Task Force Nyx was introduced to an unaccompanied minor named Fida. He had been shot by the Taliban in his home village, and was subsequently poisoned while crossing overland from Afghanistan into a neighboring third country. He did not have an onward pathway to asylum.
In addition to day-to-day emotional support, Task Force Nyx helped organize access for Fida to technical and computer skills training (an area of interest,) medical care and supply delivery when he was ill with Covid, and also organized the first birthday party that had ever been thrown in his honor, virtually! (Including balloons, treats, and a care package of clothing and essential items.)
Task Force Nyx provided ongoing funding to ensure Fida has safe and secure accommodation, which is critical given the trauma he endured, and also due to his age and vulnerability. We helped facilitate his referral for a refugee visa to Canada; he arrived safely to the True North in Spring 2022, and is settling in with support of TFN co-founder Sara and her family.
“I was living in a one room apartment in Islamabad, without any hope, security, any financial resources, refugee asylum, and most important someone to share with. I didn’t have money to eat healthy food with, and my only angle of view about my life was that it’ll be in a cage-like room and always in hiding. I can’t conclude all the things that changed after Task Force Nyx helped me. I’m now thinking that I might be the luckiest person in the whole of Afghanistan and Pakistan, I have some aunties that are willing to reply to me many times a day, and don’t even feel loneliness. Thank you so much Task Force Nyx and aunties for changing my life.”
In Spring 2022, Task Force Nyx was put in contact with a family with a United States visa pathway, whose daughter suffered from a debilitating, rare genetic condition. This family had recently arrived in a transit country, but needed direct assistance to access and pay for appropriate medical care and to provide the advocacy necessary to expedite their U.S. visa.
Due to the generosity of TFN donors, we were able to fund specialist therapeutic food and medication for the 5-year-old girl and ensure she received hospital based care needed prior to her departure. The TFN team organized five years of extensive medical paperwork and created a detailed case file, which was provided to government officials, ensuring her case was expedited due to the urgency of her medical needs.
This family is currently receiving medical and resettlement support at a U.S. military base, and will arrive in the United States by early summer.
“You saved my life. I will never forget it.”
TFN has been providing fiancial and visa relocation support to three Afghans in the UAE currently living with a friend of TFN Co-Founder Laura. The “F” family have lovingly taken in these three young people to their home, providing support and educational tutoring, and have fully integrated them into their family life. It is hoped the young people will travel to be reunited with other family members in a final resettlement country soon.