Artwork created by six Afghan women is now on display at the New Bedford Free Public Library located at 613 Pleasant Street.

The women arrived in New Bedford with their families last year after the withdrawal of U.S. Troops from Afghanistan.

Library Director Olivia Melo, Coordinator of Community Education Mali Lim, and Dabeeri Emad, representing all of the Afghan families, joined Townsquare Sunday this week to talk about the art exhibit and its importance to the community.

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The Afghan Women's Art Project (From One Heart to Another) opened Thursday, February 9 during AHA Night.

"It's an honor to host this display and see the materials the women have delivered. It's a spectacular piece," Melo said.

Courtesy Janet Barboza
Courtesy Janet Barboza

The exhibit is located on the third floor of the library building, and showcases fiber art, embroidery, jewelry, decorative painting and traditional and modern clothing.

Organizers said the women were enthusiastic about sharing their homeland's history and culture as a way to thank the SouthCoast region which welcomed them as they adjusted to their new homes.

"The participation was quite good," Emad said. "(What) we really wanted for these ladies was to put them in the community and social life, and to show them they are in a better place and they can do something."

Once the exhibit wraps up on March 23, efforts will begin to sell the artwork online, providing the women with some immediate income and perhaps open the door to the world of business in the U.S.

The complete interview about the Afghan Women's Art Project can be heard here:

Townsquare Sunday is public affairs program that airs Sunday at 6 a.m. and 11 a.m. on WBSM. The program highlights community organizations and individuals who are working to make the SouthCoast a better place to live.

If you would like your organization featured on Townsquare Sunday, please e-mail the host at

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