The Afghan Children’s Songbook Project began in 2002 with a songbook of traditional Afghan children’s songs that had been collected in Afghanistan in the late 60’s. Keenly aware that Afghanistan had suffered almost two decades of war and the systematic eradication of all music, there was a fear that these children’s songs would be lost forever. Now, nine years later, with the involvement of an Afghan-owned graphic design and printing company, a newly designed songbook, CD cassette tape and Teacher’s Guide have been produced based on the original collection.
When the Taliban banned all music from Afghan culture, the hardest hit were the women and children. Women were no longer allowed to sing to their children and children could not sing in schools or during playtime. The impact of returning these songs to Afghan children and their families cannot be underestimated. For many Afghans, hearing these songs again brings them to tears. Essential to the project is the fact that each child receives their own book.