Wednesday (Aug 15th), Kabul, Afghanistan -- a suicide bomber detonated himself inside a classroom filled with over one hundred university hopeful students. More than fifty students died, and over seventy were critically injured. Among the dead was Rahila, an ambitious and bright young Afghan women who dreamed of studying Economics, and through it relieving her poor society. But her dream was instantly demolished as she sat in that classroom pursuing it.
When Hamid Omer, Rahila's older brother, found out about the terrorist attack, he immediately rushed to the scene to find her. But he had no luck for hours, desperately searching the school and the hospitals in Kabul City to find a trace of his sister: alive or dead. Eventually, in one hospital, he was able to identify her martyred body from a wristwatch she was wearing. Discovering her sister dead, Hamid wrote this on his Facebook:
[Translated]: "My dear baby! Next year, I was supposed to search your name on the results sheet for Kankor (the nationwide university-entrance exam for which Rahila was preparing in that classroom where the attack happened), but instead yesterday I had to search your name [on victims' list] in hospitals after hospitals. I was looking for your cute face among torn dead corpses. Oh, how much I wish I was dead instead of you. You know? I couldn't recognize your face. I recognized you from your wristwatch, and your torn to pieces clothes. My dear, I told myself to leave [you there] and not to tell anyone [about what had happened]. Maybe tonight you will come back and say "hellooooo!", and make us delighted with your mischievous laughs. But it is too late now. You have quietly gone to Heaven to see mother. Tell her we said hi."
Just the night before the attack, Hamid had talked with Rahila as she talked passionately about her dreams, her goals, her future. She told him about her decision to do an undergraduate degree in economics, her favorite field of study. To encourage her more, Hamid had promised a “good” prize for her if she successfully got into her favorite field of study. “Just favorite field of study?” she had reacted with surprise. “I want to score the highest in Kankor (the university entrance exam)! ”
In the days after the attack, Hamid kept finding out more about her sister's life and ambitions from her small diary. Here is a brief paragraph [in her own juvenile words]: “I can be the Rahil that her society desperately needs in its pursuit for prosperity and progress. This society will overcome its current crisis by solutions drawn from the knowledge and education of its youth, the like of Rahil…”
When Hamid's community elders came forward to offer some financial support towards Rahila's funeral, Hamid had a better idea for how to put the money to good use. He decided he will establish a library in memory of her deceased sister, the courage she exemplified, and the passion with which she pursued her education. With Rahila Library, Hamid hopes he can support thousands of "Rahilas" for whom access to education remains an unaffordable dream. This is the only way he can help advance Rahila's dreams for the betterment of the wider society.
Please help Hamid make this noble initiative happen, for which his sister and her peers paid with their lives.