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This article is published in number 37 of Vanity Fair on newsstands until September 14, 2021

Pina G. is 64 years old and lives in Milan. As soon as she returns from vacation, like all of us, she is overwhelmed by the images and news coming from Afghanistan. Pina is practical and hates standing still. So he picks up the phone, calls the association Pangea who has known for a long time and asks how it can be useful. His first idea is to make available a free room in his apartment for one of the girls arriving from Kabul.

Gives PangeaHowever, they let her know that it is not yet possible to sort the refugees because Covid and bureaucracy are slowing down solidarity. But she doesn’t give up, to tell the truth she never does when she gets something into her head. So, while I listen to her on the phone, she tells me that she is packing a suitcase with clothes and other basic necessities to take to the collection center. “And later, around noon,” he says with a noise of pots in the background, “I’ll start preparing take-away meals for those who need them. I improvised a cook. And when more is needed, I’ll be there. I will be ready ».

In this issue of Vanity Fair we have addressed the painful question of the Taliban’s return to Afghanistan in two ways. You can see the first on the cover: the portrait of an Afghan girl who managed to escape from the country and arrive in Italy. His voice, his story, exactly like those you will find in the newspaper, ask us only one thing: do not forget us. Here and now but above all in the coming months, when the media limelight will go out and these events will risk being forgotten.
The second way to tell these facts is make a change of perspective that highlights the incredible solidarity movement that is taking place in Italy. On our digital channels, website and social networks, we will tell with the hashtag #NoiSiamoAccoglienza all the initiatives, associations and projects that are involved and will take care of lending a hand. More: we will collect the stories of those who are already bringing concrete support. And it does not matter whether they are large or small sums, or large or negligible actions: what matters is to take a step. Because soon, we know, the usual ones will come to say that Italians come first, that there is still the pandemic, that people lose their jobs, that there are the poor here too. It’s all true, it’s all understandable. But it is even more true and even more understandable that there is a face of Italy that looking at the face we put on the cover can only ask: what can I do? How can I contribute? It is in that face that we recognize ourselves. It is in that spirit that we can truly call ourselves Italians.
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