Mohammad’s brother was employed as Hagar’s first ever driver in Afghanistan. As Hagar programmes expanded, the need for more staff increased and he suggested his brother apply for a position. Mohammad first worked as a night driver for two years, then became the day driver in 2011.
“My brother told me that Hagar helped the most vulnerable within society and provided excellent services to recovering women and children. At first, working at night was a challenge because it was very unsafe, but I enjoyed my responsibilities because I knew I was making a difference to those who needed help and safety.” Nowadays, Mohammad drives during the day. Being a driver in Kabul isn’t a safe job, with security risks like suicide attacks, crowded roads, and road blockages. But he enjoys his routine. “On a typical day, I drop clients or staff off at their destinations safe and sound. We sometimes have to go and visit reintegrated women or children, and I feel so happy when we follow-up on them because they became like family while they stay at Hagar. It’s so good to visit them and see them thriving. It’s a very fulfilling job”
Over the years, Mohammad has seen many women and children. He has noticed an improvement in them educationally, psychologically and physically. Over time he’s learnt to listen to clients and understand their problems, as well as to respect women and give more of a voice to female members in his household.
“I have now learnt to listen and become more sympathetic towards my own family and children. I give a chance for women in the family to express their ideas and thoughts in my house. I’ve also learnt alternate ways of addressing any family issues that may arise.
One day, a boy from the Transitional Care Centre was sat in the van and told me about the services he had been receiving and how he felt good and his life had improved. He was asking about driving. I was able to instruct him about road safety and how he should be very cautious. I explained to him that life has value and we need to be more careful driving a car in order to prevent accident.”
Mohammad is making an impact on a daily basis in the lives of women and children at Hagar. He creates a safe place as he drives clients through unsafe streets of Kabul. His care, joy and passion has changed the lives of those in Hagar’s programmes as well those who are reintegrated.