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Popli Khalatbari Charitable Foundation Vocational School

By Syma Sayyah, Tehran


The Popli Khalatbari Charitable Foundation has done it again! This hard working NGO puts shame on the faces of those who say that one cannot work in Iran. They, and the work they do in Iran (among other places) prove that once there is a will there is a way.  If you really mean it you can do it, and do it well, on time, without fuss and with highest standards.



I have been aware of the Popli Khalatbari Charitable Foundation (PKCF) for some years through my editor at, and since then I have been following their work and efforts in Iran as well as giving them a hand for their good causes whenever I have been able to do so.


Their latest project, completed in less than two years, is a technical school for girls in the west of Tehran at the end of the Resalat Expressway.  There are over 300 girls studying there now, and there may be 30 more next year.  The girls will be able to study accounting, physical education and computer science.



This school ground is 7000 sq meters and the school itself is constructed on 3,500 sq meters.  The construction started in February 2004 and the school was opened in September 2005.  There is a large stadium for games and sporting activities.  Great provision has been made for the comfort of students and the staff alike. 



This technical school plans to be a center to train girls to meet the needs of the modern world and prepare them for the challenges of the realities of work and life.   One can hope that through such schools we will be able to train more and more young girls and boys who can respond to the needs of our nation and make it better, instead of going to university courses in subjects that they never intend to follow once they get the paper degree. 


At the Popli Technical School and other such places, young girls learn to stand on their feet as not only do they get a good and solid education but more so, like the European technical schools, they learn a trade which they can use to earn a good living and make a better life for themselves.



This new Technical School was opened just in time for this academic year and believe me, I have never seen nor heard of such a large project to go so successfully and so fast.   This was due to the sincere determination and hard work of all those involved, who incidentally were mostly women.  These included Mrs Diana Khalatbari, the director of the foundation who followed progress constantly from wherever she was, the good Mohandess Mrs Shafiee and Mr Mokhless who handled the whole building project, and Mohandess Mr Bahram Shokouhian who was the school architect, who donated his and his firm's time free of charge.  Five public buildings in Iran were short listed for the building of the year award; Mr Shokouhian's design for the school was awarded the third prize!



The first time I went there eighteen months ago, there was nothing, just the land which the local educational authority had given the Popli foundation on which to build the school.  There were delays due to all the different formalities, and then once it started,  every time I went there to have a look, every few months, I could not believe my eyes, the speed, the efficiency, the dedication and of course all the juggling that had to be done.  Last but not least  I would like to mention the lovely statue of two butterflies the emblem of PKCF,  that Mrs Simin Ekramie designed for the school, which like all her other works is original, great and beautiful to look at.  


PKCF will continue its involvement with the school, by appointing three members to the school's board of trustees and, like their other projects, they will continue to support its maintenance.  Also PKCF will take care of  the content and furnishing of the school library in the coming year, no doubt it will be another great example of the good and hard work that PKCF does in Iran and may others learn from it and believe that here the highest standards can be attained.  Well done PKCF once again!



I have some pictures for you taken during the18 months that this school was being built and all the changes that came about to make this modern delightful school that one would love ones' own children to go to learn and be educated as  modern young ladies in modern times.


Please check the PKCF web site to become more familiar with all the great work that they do:





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