War, desolation, oppression, destruction. When we think of Afghanistan, these are often the images that come to mind. But Afghanistan is not just a conflict zone. We are influenced by the world of mass media, seeing only one side of a story. But as with all things, there are always two sides, and when it comes to Afghanistan, far more stories go untold, slipping between the media cracks.
Afghanistan may be a warzone, but a warzone doesn’t mean a cultural dead zone. Unfortunately, the stories that we most often hear from this part of the world are often wrought with death and destruction. But in the midst of conflict, there is hope. What are these untold stories?
There is passion. There is beauty. There is life. There is optimism. There are artists. There are musicians. There are activists. There are dreamers who know that there is a space for positive change, and they are doing everything in their power to make it happen.
Afghan Dreamers is a book project that seeks to tell these stories; the ones that paint a different picture of Afghanistan. A picture that shows the innovation and inspiration that can be born out of destruction.
Afghan Dreamers is a partnership between Sharp Stuff who recently launched their first book project American Dreamers, and Mountain2Mountain. This is a project that amplifies the voice of these dreamers; a project that illustrates the hopes and dreams of Afghans living during another period of transition for Afghanistan. Forty years of war may have destroyed much in this region, but these stories, these dreamers, show that it hasn’t destroyed the pride and spirit of Afghanistan.
The book will bring together interviews with 20 plus Afghan innovators and dreamers, helping to not only tell their individual stories, but also of Afghanistan as a whole. These are voices that need to be heard—they showcase the power, the spirit, the hope, and the creativity many assume isn’t possible in a country like Afghanistan.
Words are a powerful tool, and ultimately, these stories have the chance to break down our assumptions about this place and encourage us to rethink how we look at not only Afghanistan, but any place that has been destroyed in the face of conflict.
If you want to help get these stories told, support Afghan Dreamers and stay up to date on the project on rally.org/afghandreamers.