No Girl Afraid appeal | ActionAid UK

For ActionAid’s No Girl Afraid appeal, we are asking for your support to transform the life of a girl like Assenat, by sponsoring a child. 

In countries torn apart by conflict, millions of children like Assenat are traumatised, living in fear and facing unimaginable hardship. 

In Gaza, four-year-old Assenat gets very frightened when she hears planes overhead. Every night, thousands of children in Gaza suffer from nightmares and bedwetting, signs of the severe emotional distress they feel from witnessing violence and destruction.

When they wake up, these children cannot even turn on a light for comfort. Since Gaza’s only power plant was shut down, families like Assenat’s are only getting four hours of electricity a day. Assenat’s mother, Rewa’a, says: “They are living in fear, they can’t sleep most of the time.” Many are too scared to go to the toilet in the night, and without light, older children can’t do homework.

Meet Freshta, a four-year-old sponsored child in Afghanistan


When four-year-old Freshta’s family fled the Taliban, they had no choice but to make a new home in a cave in the Bamyan region, up in the mountains. Thousands of other families left the country altogether to escape persecution and conflict, fleeing to neighbouring countries for safety. But when Freshta’s father was injured by the Taliban, her family couldn’t travel. They had to stay in the cave.

In the winter, their cave offered no warmth or comfort from the bitter cold. Heavy snowfall made it impossible to go far and there were no jobs, so there was no income for the family. Freshta and her family survived on a diet of tea and bread.

Instead of playing with her friends or looking forward to starting school, Freshta would spend her day cleaning and collecting firewood. The water she collected from the stream was dirty and unsuitable for drinking, but it was their only option.

Life was a constant struggle for this young family until Freshta found a child sponsor through ActionAid. Sponsorship has helped Freshta’s family to build a new home in Bamyan so they can protect their children. And her whole community can now access a clean, safe source of water.

Now Freshta’s older brother goes to the local primary school, and Freshta can enjoy her childhood while she waits for her turn to get the education that will transform her life.

Sponsor a child with ActionAid

Through child sponsorship, ActionAid’s local staff and partners provide direct support to girls like Assenat and Freshta. 

• We help provide rechargeable lights and street lighting so girls don’t fear each nightfall, and to make early morning walks to school less dangerous

• We support psychosocial services and family centres to help children overcome trauma and PTSD symptoms

• We provide backpacks, pens, pencils and stationery supplies so children can go to school

Will you help bring hope for the future to girls at risk in the world’s toughest places? 

Sponsor a child

Where your sponsorship money goes

Sponsoring a child costs just 65p a day. 80% of your sponsorship money goes overseas to help your child and their community, and the remaining 20% is invested in the UK on public education and finding more sponsors.

The community where your child lives knows best what challenges he or she is facing. That’s why the community decides where the money is needed most and what it should be spent on. 

You can be sure we’ll achieve as much as possible with every pound of your sponsorship money. And you’ll see the difference you’re making to your sponsored child’s life through regular updates on how your money’s being spent. 

Begin your sponsorship

ActionAid sets up street lighting in vulnerable neighbourhoods in Gaza so girls can get to school safely when it’s dark.

Photo credits: Celia Peterson, Lorenzo Tugnoli/ActionAid.


Page updated 10 January 2018