We Believe in

the Power of Books

At Book Cottage we empower, connect, and inspire Afghans to create peaceful communities through reading and mutual understanding.


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Our Vision:

We seek to empower and inspire Afghans to create peaceful communities through reading and mutual understanding.


Our Mission:

To create a reading culture among Afghan children through community based reading engagements, which supports global cultural connections and mutual understandings rooted in respect.

Why We do this work

It is no secret that Afghanistan has been going through war and conflict for more than four decades. The consequences of war have created widespread poverty, corruption and growing illiteracy.  The trauma of war has resulted in tremendous physical and mental damage to both the country of Afghanistan and its people, including robbing the youthful and carefree childhood of Afghan children. Throughout this devastation, the war has stripped many Afghans of their opportunity to engage with books and literature in a positive and meaningful way. The average literacy rate among Afghan adults currently remains at 31%.

At Book Cottage, we want to restore a culture of reading to Afghanistan and foster a sense of hope and peace among Afghan youth, the future leaders.  Our goal is to spark an interest in reading among Afghan children and youth who are literate but may not have the resources and opportunities to read outside of school. When these children engage with literature, they are more likely to bring their enthusiasm and this practice home to their families. It is our hope and expectation that the joy of reading and the knowledge it imparts will spread throughout their communities, encouraging a deeper culture and appreciation for reading. We seek to create a culture of reading that is rooted systemic change and can be passed onto future generations.  

Through our work we seek to create a reading culture rooted in joy that enhances knowledge, builds critical thinking skills, and ultimately promotes systemic change.  To reach these goals we host a number of community events, work with partner schools and train high school and college students to serve as inspiring leaders and role models.  These student leaders volunteer their time to read to younger school children and assist with a number of other Book Cottage activities across various communities.

We do this work because we believe that restoring a culture of reading can also help restore hopes and dreams to Afghan childhoods to inspire them to be empowered leaders for the future, prepared and motivated to impact positive change in Afghanistan and around the world.


Video by Paul Corgan. To view more of his awesome projects, please visit https://www.paulcorgan.com

August 2016

 For Mahsheed, reading is fundamental to education, which, in her view, is one sure way to lift Afghanistan and the Afghan people to a brighter future.

Lauren C. Anderson / The Huffington Post / Read Full Article