Equipping Welcomers:

Culturally Contextualized Resources for Afghan Families
As many schools, nonprofits, ESL programs, churches, and individuals welcome Afghan families into their communities, it can be difficult to find culturally sensitive resources in English, Pashto, and Dari.
Books Unbound is a humanitarian startup designed to address this nationwide need. Since Kabul was captured by the Taliban, we have been researching, creating, and piloting our new Afghan books to aid in offering a familiar and warm welcome to newly arrived families.
Our products are created by refugees and for refugees with an extensive cultural feedback process to ensure efficacy. Our Afghan Picture Dictionaries and Coloring Books packed with Afghan culture, cuisines, dress, holidays, and language are now being used in over 35 states. This means teachers and volunteers also get the chance to learn from the students about their homeland.
Thematic Report from our Users | Afghan Product Line
Our Afghan Picture Dictionary has been used by individuals, organizations, schools, and libraries across the United States.
We’ve collected feedback from users who have been implementing our Afghan Picture Dictionary and Teacher’s Guide.
Based on the feedback, we have identified 5 themes that have emerged from those implementing the Picture Dictionary and Teacher Guide on the ground to welcome newly arrived families across the USA.

Our Afghan Books are…


Specifically tailored to the immediate needs of arrivals walking through the resettlement process.
“I like that the books are culturally appropriate and illustrate familiar objects and needs they may have at the store or at home. I like the food, feelings and body sections as it pertains more to immediate needs they may have to communicate.” -ESL Coordinator, USA
“The division of topics are so applicable for the family we are co-hosting. I can’t wait to give it to them and use it together. The maladies page is brilliant! These types of concerns are difficult to express for anyone learning a new language.” Julie, Welcomer, USA
“Perfect for our Afghan neighbors. When I brought it to the family, Rahila who is 8 and currently in 2nd grade claimed it and excitedly showed me what English she knew and the Dari for it and went on to get the English pronunciation correct it went in her backpack for use at school.” Jillian, Welcomer, USA


Preserving Afghan culture while assisting families in the process of learning a new language.
“There are so many pages of vocabulary and beautiful illustrations. It is also helpful for Afghans who have left and want to hold onto their heritage as they learn English.” Sharon, Educator in Colorado, USA
“There are so few resources that cater to Afghan clients who speak Pashto or Dari. Books Unbound is helping to bridge the language gap for new families to have a smoother resettlement process.” Educator, USA


Providing opportunity for welcomers to become learners too, prompting a mutual knowledge exchange.
“I think this book looks great for eliciting conversations, assisting either literate or illiterate Afghanis to begin their journey in learning English and connecting native English speakers naturally with their Afghani friends and neighbors.”  Welcomer, USA


Bringing joy to families and increasing learning engagement through illustrations of familiar words, objects, and scenes.
“Our Afghan adult ESOL students were delighted to have the dictionaries. Resources that include their languages are scarce and these elicited big smiles! We are ordering more for our K-12 students.” ESL Teacher, USA
“I only know that when I gave the 3-language picture dictionary to the Afghan refugee family, Mom immediately sat down with 5 and 3 yr old children to point out pictures and say the words. She really appreciated simple pictures with written words she could read and identify with. She looked at the emotions page first.” Mary Glenn, Welcomer in Massachusetts, USA


Contextualized through a rigorous feedback process, making them a one-of-a-kind resource.
“The cartoons are so beautiful. I’m trusting that you’ve “done your homework” since I am just a beginner in learning about Afghanis and their rich culture.” -Welcomer, USA
“Afghan Picture Dictionary is a top-notch resource for ESL work with Afghan families. Book will last through many lessons and many students! Has much of the material that I need for ESL with attractive graphics. Having materials for Afghan refugees is immensely helpful. Not much is available.” Janet, ESL Teacher, USA

Need a copy of our Afghan books?

Check out our online store and buy yourself a copy! If you need to buy them in bulk, connect with us directly:
[email protected]

Share your feedback!
Have you been using our Afghan products in the community? Take this 2 minute survey and share your feedback today!
Read a copy of the impact report in PDF form HERE.

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