(Kopie 1)

This is Karla Schefter’s impressing report of her long lasting work for the Chak- e- Wardak Hospital in Afghanistan.

Published by Ullstein
ISBN 3-350-07182-5
333 pages, 43 colour pictures

Translated into many languages

Text on the cover

Out of curiosity the German OT-head nurse Karla Schefter goes to Afghanistan in 1989. All she knows about this country is: There is a war going on there! After the retreat of the Russian Army the collective war of the different tribes against the occupying Soviet Union had become a fratricidal war.

At the risk of her life she starts to help the war wounded and the sick until she is able to found a hospital in Chak, 70 kilometres from Kabul. Starting with two provisionally equipped rooms in a former hydroelectric power plant she perseveres in establishing a complete hospital compound and is able to keep it working up to today in spite of various dangers and changes of power.

Karla Schefter managed to become an accepted partner in the Afghan men dominated society. She was listened to by the Council of Elders, negotiated with the Mujahideen and even found arrangements with the Taliban, in order to be able to help people, who would have had to live even more desperately without her and the hospital. Although the fundamental Taliban refuse the right to education to all women, Karla Schefter has always trained nurses and midwives and always afforded widows and Afghan women the opportunity of working for her in the hospital.

In September 2001 she- as one of the last foreigners - has to leave the country hurriedly. But she will come back to continue her task. Her experiences related here also show the unknown sides of Afghanistan and its people.



"I will not give up the human being - Afghanistan, a land without hope?"

Rowohlt Verlag GmbH
ISBN 978 3498 06419 8
250 pages
With the stories and fates of her patients, friends and staff members she paints a blunt picture of the war torn country. No journalist and no “Bundeswehr”-soldier can look back on twenty years in this country like her. Twenty years during which Karla Schefter witnessed human misery on the one hand, but also joy and hope on the other hand – and during which she had to face tribal chiefs, village elders, Mudshahidin, Warlords and the radical Taliban.
Afghanistan: that means acknowledging many very human weaknesses – but also special strengths – just as respecting a foreign code of honour. Thus the project management is a balancing act between “letting things develop generously” and “interfering in the right moment consequently”. Not in a western way but in the scope of traditions. Giving up does not come into question: Because it is about human beings. And because it is about human beings, the author passes all fees from the book sale and the publishing house-organized readings – plus the resulting donations – to the hospital project.



"Women, humans"

Ingrid Lessing Verlag
ISBN: 978-3-929931-32-7
Poems and many full-page colour photographs, coated in Afghan embroidery

Women, humans: with her third book Karla Schefter makes her dearest wish come true – and a gem emerged. Already the outward appearance makes that visible and tangible: Every edition is coated with Afghan embroidery und thus a unique item. Content wise Karla Schefter deals with the special situation of women in Afghanistan sensitively in impressive poems and photographs. Many face-to-face encounters and experiences were portrayed lovingly.
Her friend Rosy Kramme writes: “The reader has to be willing to give in into the entries and thoughts of Karla Schefter and to embrace them emotionally. While a lot of generalizing messages are published by various governments and communities of interest, she stays at a loving distance with her observations… Thus the book conveys an access to the existing daily routine of the people by completely new means.”