Norgrove charity inspires parents

The parents of an aid worker who was killed after being taken hostage in Afghanistan have been "inspired" by the work of a charity set up in her name.

John and Lorna Norgrove - whose daughter Linda died during a mission to rescue her in October 2010 - travelled to the country to visit projects funded through the foundation they created in her memory.

The couple, from Lewis in Scotland, have used money from the Linda Norgrove Foundation to continue the 36-year-old's work in the war-torn country.

Their trip to Afghanistan was filmed for a BBC documentary broadcast this week to mark the two-year anniversary of their daughter's death. They visited a number of aid projects and met her colleagues and friends.

Mrs Norgrove said: "We went back for several reasons: we wanted to visit the projects the foundation was funding, we wanted to meet the people who were helping us to monitor these projects and to implement them, and in particular we wanted to meet with Linda's friends and colleagues and it was important to us to do that.

"We've been working with Medical House Children's Hospital in Kabul, where we have been able to provide life-saving surgeries for five children. We were able to visit this project when we were there and it's absolutely amazing what they are doing. These children have genetic bone diseases and they struggle with everyday life but we've seen the results of their surgery and that has been very inspiring, it just makes everything seem worthwhile."

Mr Norgrove said their daughter was drawn to work in Afghanistan by the nature of the people. The couple had visited the country before on holidays during the 1970s and enjoyed its diversity.

He said: "It's a marvellous country. It was a wee bit dangerous even in the '70s but it's a fascinating place and is such a crossroads between East and West and the past and the present in many ways.

"It's a totally different society and it's been a learning curve trying to understand how people live there. People in Afghanistan are very strong on family and they are generally more concerned with family than we are in the West, but on the other hand some women are treated extremely badly.

"Women and children were very important to Linda. She believed very much in the importance of education for women in Afghanistan. We've heard some terrible stories of domestic abuse and, being a small foundation, we can hopefully help some individual cases in the future."