May 29, 2019
Eight months of continuous work, a soft-launch in April, and three showcases in the US set the stage for Aseel’s official launch in May 2019 at the Embassy of Afghanistan in Washington, DC that included opening statements by the Afghanistan’s Ambassador to the US, Roya Rahmani, as well as a panel of experts, made up of ASEEL’s Nasrat Khalid, Mr. Jawed Joya, the Afghan commercial attaché, and Ms. Kelly Fink, a representative of US Administration of International Development (USAID).
ASEEL offers meaningful stories behind those products. When mujahedeen burned Istalif, a small town in Western Afghanistan, Feroz Bukhdi saved some tools and kilns to one day revive his shops that produced the distinct turquoise ceramics native to his town. When the Taliban occupied Kabul, they forced Ahmad Wali to make gun holsters and whips from his shops, and now he hopes to bring back traditional Uzbek leather goods that represent an Afghanistan headed towards peace. With every piece of art, Fahkira Nezami’s Mehr Art Studio preserves Afghanistan’s artistic heritage of gold-embossed calligraphy while promoting and empowering women artisans. These are just a few of the heartwarming stories behind ASEEL’s vendors.
The hard working ASEEL has their own stories too. The team of 10 volunteers currently work out of five countries. The team in Kabul is made up mostly of junior professionals, fresh graduates passionate about developing Afghanistan’s economy. Developers in the UK, social media teams in Australia, media interns in the US, and development and supply chain management in Kabul are just some aspects of ASEEL’s growing team. They all work to make long-term and impactful change, hoping to employ of thousands of Afghan men and women and improve the economy.
When they first launched, the ASEEL team announced the #IAMASEEL and #MadeInAfghanistan social media campaigns which will involve tours of major cities, starting with Kabul, to promote the platform and products. ASEEL believes that everyone in every sector can contribute to make this change. ASEEL firmly believes that the youth, especially, can make a huge difference, and proves this by employing a team of mostly under 25-year olds. ASEEL’s first mission in Afghanistan is to create 10,000 jobs by the end of 2021. With six months of learning and growing underway, ASEEL invites you to join the team and our mission. Do you know a shop that could benefit from ASEEL’s platform? Do you wish to promote the app on social media? Would your friends in the media want to write a feature on ASEEL? Would you consider joining this growing, global team? Whatever your choice, ASEEL team is open and excited to work with you.