Westminster Community Responds to Afghanistan Crisis


Reyha Parsh

After watching the Taliban take over Afghanistan when the U.S. government pulled its troops out, having been stationed there for 20 years, Westminster students and faculty have decided to take action and help the Afghan refugees coming to the U.S. 

Westminster students express sadness about the current events in Afghanistan. “It’s kind of sad what it’s come to . . . Afghanistan used to be a nice place and now it’s pretty much a war zone,” says 7th grader George Trotter.

The Taliban have been notorious for limiting women’s rights, especially when it comes to education. “I don’t like how the Taliban aren’t letting women learn,” says 6th grader Siri Parikh. “As a girl myself it’s rude and disrespectful, and it needs to be fixed.”

On a more positive note, Westminster has decided to help the refugees coming to the U.S. by creating supply boxes full of donated leftover school supplies. Patrick Egan, U.S. History teacher and 8th Grade Boys Chair says that he is “happy that Westminster students are thinking about the needs of those in Afghanistan.” 

By collecting school supplies, Westminster helps make the Afghan refugees’ transition into school easier. “I think, given the restrictions that we have around COVID right now, what we’ve done has been pretty awesome,” says Community Service Coordinator Hartley Glass. “The fact that we were able to combine school supplies with a hand-written note welcoming them to our city was a really great gesture by our Middle School.” 

Westminster came through with the supplies in a big way. There were 30 boxes of supplies, so a total of 30 students,” Glass states. “Each box had, I would say, probably a dozen things inside it.”

Many of Westminster’s faculty and staff feel inspired to help the Afghan refugees in whatever way possible. “I think that as someone who was a Westminster student back in the day, I really value the community we have here at Westminster and I think we do a really good job of creating a community for our students here,” says Glass. “It just makes me sad and kind of breaks my heart that a student who comes to Atlanta from another country has left everything that they knew behind, and they’re not immediately going to be brought into a community as strong as the one we have here.”