Basic living standards in Afghanistan are among the lowest in the world. Yet experts stress that the latest poverty numbers should serve as a call to action, not a reason for despair:

  • More than half the Afghan population now lives below the national poverty line, a sharp drop in the past five years (Afghanistan Living Conditions Survey, 2018)
  • Afghanistan is experiencing stagnating economic growth (World Bank)
  • 6.3 million people require humanitarian and protection assistance (ReliefWeb, 2019)
  • Escalation of violence, loss of essential livelihood, and little to no access to basic services are major concerns (Relief Lab)

Islamic Relief USA has proudly served Afghanistan for more than 20 years, and continues to prioritize those in dire need in Afghanistan today.

Most recently, we declared an emergency in the 2018-2019 winter, along with other relief agencies, in order to care for those displaced by drought. Research suggests the drought is alarmingly linked to global warming. Many displaced families have lost all crops and livestock, and now struggle to survive cold winters in makeshift tents.

We made sure to help as many families in need by using the aid you give to distribute food and winter warmth items like blankets and coats.

IRUSA also supports a range of long-term projects in Afghanistan that include:

  • seasonal meat distribution during Ramadan and Eid
  • literacy, education, career, and business programs for women
  • orphan support and vocational training
  • emergency aid
  • winter aid
  • water projects

Sectors served throughout Asia: 2017 - 2019

Where We Work


This past year, a severe drought resulting from climate change struck Afghanistan, displacing 2.4 million people who left their homes in search of food and water after fields dried up and crops and livestock died. Yet those same families are now living in tents, left to brave freezing winter temperatures. Read more about the stories of real individuals affected by this crisis, who were met by Islamic Relief USA staff who traveled to Afghanistan to give support.