Art March 18, 2010 By Jennifer Pappas

sinclair pagetwo Stephanie Sinclair
How did you get involved in this project; was it difficult gaining access to these women?

I lived and worked in the Middle East for about six years, so I often went to Afghanistan on assignment. I cover a lot of women’s issues because in this particular region, it’s a very relevant topic. Traditionally, Afghan women cover themselves completely. They wear blue burqas, and you can’t even see their eyes.
     I encountered these women when they and their families were at their most vulnerable. This was essentially a suicide attempt. After they survived, most women weren’t even able to receive proper medical care because the hospital [in the town of Herat] was very rudimentary and most Afghan families were so poor they couldn’t afford to pay for the antibiotics or the medicine needed to treat the woman’s skin.
     I arrived at a time when these women and their families finally understood that they really needed to show people what was happening in order to get proper help. If not for themselves, for the hundreds of other women who’d done the same thing. Thankfully, because of this project there was a new burn ward built in the city of Herat. It’s now the best burn ward in Afghanistan.

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