Inspiring Moms of May: Afghan Mom Becomes a Neonatal Nurse


At Direct Relief, May is for moms. Throughout the month, we will regularly honor mothers around the world who inspire us. Today’s story comes from Dr. Mark Scoffield, CEO of American Medical Overseas Relief. 

Mursal is a mother in Afghanistan who is also a neonatal nurse for American Medical Overseas Relief (AMOR), a Direct Relief partner. While this may not seem all that unusual, it is in Afghanistan – a country where women have largely been excluded from education, and even killed for attempting to seek one.

Mursal’s story is remarkable.  She didn’t let her past life in a small one-room hut, suffering frequent abuse, stop her from achieving her dream of becoming an educated, professional woman with a daughter of her own.

Many women in the Afghanistan face obstacles preventing them from achieving a basic level of education. Following decades of war, civil unrest, internal conflicts and political instability, education remains one of the must vulnerable social sectors.

Even with increased access to education, often women remain hesitant to pursue higher education because of their responsibilities at home. Earning a degree in nursing is truly a testament to Mursal’s desire for a better life and dedication to helping others.

Following her accomplishment, Mursal joined AMOR-sponsored Afshar Hospital – located just outside of Kabul – as a nurse in the new neonatal unit. Her daughter is one of the young children in the hospital’s day care center, which allows Mursal to care for very young and struggling infants.

We are grateful for mothers like Mursal who are determined to achieve more than ever thought possible. Her own daughter and the infants she cares for are fortunate to have an amazing mom and nurse like Mursal.

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