Flowers for the Future exceeds $10k fundraising goal to support education for girls in Afghanistan

CCA students have been using Zoom to speak with students in Afghanistan.
CCA students have been using Zoom to speak with students in Afghanistan.
(Timothy Stiven)

Flowers for the Future held a “May Flowers” fundraiser at the end of May in the Mingei International Museum La Atalaya Foundation Theater, exceeding its goal of $10,000 for laptops and equipment to help girls in Afghanistan continue their education.

About 60 people were in attendance at the event, which featured a poetry exchange with original works by girls from Kabul, Afghanistan.

“They performed it in Dari, and then my students recited it in English,” said Tim Stiven, a Canyon Crest Academy history teacher. “They’ve gotten to know each other, so they knew what the poems were about. That was beautiful, poetry is amazing.”

Flowers for the Future formed in 2021, shortly after the Taliban gained control of Afghanistan. The regime change was especially hard on the nation’s girls, many of whom were prevented from going to school. In 2022, Stiven and a group of CCA student leaders used Flowers for the Future to hold a live exchange program with the Mawoud Educational Center in Kabul.

“It was great to have the audience see something that we’ve been doing for two years,” said Stiven. “You can see these kids live, 10,000 miles away connecting with you.”

The May fundraiser also included a silent auction for art that the Afghan girls had made. But one of the most poignant parts of the event was the broadcast of a 15-minute play recreating a suicide bombing by an older brother.

“It wasn’t an abstract, or in a sense acting, because they have seen friends of theirs actually die in a suicide bombing,” Stiven said. “So they knew what it felt like.”

The online meetings with the CCA students and girls in Kabul, Afghanistan, have included STEM labs, art and poetry. The sessions grew to include students from Hong Kong.

In a New York Times article profiling the CCA club, Najibullah Yousefi, the principal of Mawoud Learning Center, said “we are so happy we are not alone in this world.”

“There are some beautiful minds on the other side of the world who are concerned about us,” Yousefi told the New York Times.

Stiven said that Flowers for the Future could expand to other countries, and even multiple continents, to help students around the world.

“The one thing they kept on saying was the reason why they still have hope is because we’ve made this effort to make contact with them to continue their education,” Stiven said.

For more information, visit