YWLC-Bamyan (Young Women Leadership Conference in Bamyan) Refelction!

YWLC (Young Women Leadership Conference) was conducted from Dec23-Dec28, 2017 in the peaceful heart of Afghanistan, Bamyan!

YWLC had a series of activities regarding ethnic harmony, effective listening, effective communication, trust circle, decision making power, self Awareness, and self discovery, action plan implementation, community mapping, needs assessment, and leadership Skills. We also had national and international speakers who are exemplary leaders in their communities. Our speakers were Wais Khairandewsh, Azadah Raz Muhammad, Naomi Bugre, Raj Kumar, Basel Osama, Nabila Waqef, Kubra Atayee, Shero Project, Anika, Freshta Ibrahimi, Matiullah Rahmati, Mason West, and Zahra Hussaini. All the speakers shared at least one common factor which was the desire to serve humanity and humans, to see smiles on other faces, and to start working for brining that smile, not to wait for others, rather to be the force to bring the change!

Mahboba Hussaini, YWLC-Bamyan Participant, states “I was feeling frustrated in the past, I thought I am a girl and the society does not need my contribution, someone else might be there to change the things! BUT now after YWLC I am very energetic and I consider myself the strongest person. I do understand that my country needs me and I should be a counter force against all the bad things and be a responsible citizen of my beloved country”

The Young Women Leaders in Bamyan are exceptional leaders and a true representation of the resilience and natural strength of Afghans! They are the driving forces of change, with power, determination, and vision…

Angela Samar states, “I learned that I should not only think for myself or my family, but consider the broader picture and empower everyone around me, we women are the changing forces and have the potential to change the world”!

Aqela Nasrat, another participant, says “We discovered our potentials and strengths in YWLC”. 

Ruqya says, “I have big goals for the future, I was confused where to start from to achieve my goals in the past, YWLC was a push for me to take the step and I see myself near towards achieving my goals, I know where to start from, and how to get where do I want to end up! I am equipped with enough tools and confidence!”

Our participants stated that YWLC has shown that the young women coming from Bamyan are the strong women of this land. They also stated that we are creating a support network of women who support each other in each sector!

Visiting Bamyan was such a great experience for me. I saw the inner peace, the calmness, the hard work, the love, the strength, the hope, the intellectual power, the commitment… in my beautiful people! Spending the last days of the year in Bande Ameer, in Bamyan near Buddah sculpture was truly a great ending of the year! Very much looking forward for exploring it again!

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Gharsanay Amin as recognition of her work got the “Emerging Young Leader’s Award” in 2017 by the US State Department; the second Degree Promotion from the President of Afghanistan, H.E. Dr.Ashraf Ghani; and the Responsible Citizen Award by the H.E. First Lady of Afghanistan, Rula Ghani. She is the organizer of the Young Women Leadership Conference, which provides leadership workshops for girls ages 14-19. Successful conferences have been held in Kabul, Bamyan, and Nangarhar, Ghor, Samangan, and Heart provinces with more than 500 beneficiaries. She is the co-founder of the Global Youth Development Initiative where students are connected to professional and peer mentors from across the world for academic advising and international exposure. Gharsanay is the co-organizer of the first ever Model UN in Afghanistan. As the team ambassador in the Everywhere Everywoman Project, she has been a part of a team whose mission is to develop the first ever-international Treaty on Violence Against Women from 2015-2017. She is changing the hearts and minds of the Ulema through the Afghan Girls Sustainable Education project which aims to increase enrollment and decrease drop out rates. Over 100 Ulema, tribal leaders and elders representing 21 districts from all over Nangarhar province have participated and she plans additional workshops in Jalalabad and then Laghman Province. Gharsanay recently won the Enterprise for Peace Scholarship representing Afghanistan in the One Young World Summit, 2018. She also secured a scholarship for the Generation Change Fellowship which is a two years abroad fellowship by the United States Institute of Peace. She is a Global Youth Change Ambassador by the Roundtable Global. She is also an alumni of Philia Women Empowerment, a platform provided by AUAF. She with a team represented AUAF in Willem Vis Moot Court Competition in Kuwait and in Hong Kong (getting the runner up award which for the first time a team from Afghanistan made it to that level), in ICC (International Criminal Court) Moot Court Competition in Hague, Netherlands, in International Dispute Resolution Competition held in India, and in IIT Mumbai Debate Tournament in India. She was one of the Youth Leaders in Youth Leader’s Exchange with His Holliness the Dalai Lama discussing the issues of healing and resilience and how to support youth peace building, encourage exchange with each other and manage conflict with non-violent ways and to develop inner peace. She was representing Afghanistan in the 9th Ministerial Meeting in the USA, Community of Democracies Civil Society Conference. Gharsanay was also selected to attend the Women2Women International Leadership Conference in Boston in 2015. She is a graduate of AUAF with securing high honor and honor awards almost in all the semesters and is a successful finalist for the 2019-2020 Fulbright cohort for Master’s degree. She has been teaching assistant in two courses offered at AUAF namely the Informal dispute resolution class and in the University success class. She did research in the rule of law and development in Afghanistan with Stanford Professor, Mehdi Hakimi

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