Forbes 30 under 30 Asia 2019: The 3 Afghan girls who made the nation proud

Afghan Diaspora Magazine

KABUL: Each year, Forbes, one of the leading business magazines of the world publishes a list of the most innovative and disruptive young leaders of the next generation from across Asia, the Forbes 30 Under 30 Asia list.

This list includes around 300 entrepreneurs and game-changers under the age of 30, representing 23 countries and territories in Asia.

This year’s Forbes 30 under 30 Asia list includes three revolutionary Afghan girls, who are disrupting conventions and changing the lives of the common people like never before. They have made the country and people proud.

Here, we recognise, profile and pay tribute to the achievements of Afghanistan’s three trailblazing daughters named in Forbes 30 under 30 Asia list:

1. Shabana Basij-Rasikh, 29, Co-Founder School of Leadership Afghanistan

Photo: Tedx

Shabana is an educator, humanitarian and young leader, who is the co-founder of the School of Leadership Afghanistan (SOLA), a nonprofit school dedicated to giving girls world class education. She has been recognised as a social entrepreneur by
Forbes 30 under 30 Asia for her amazing work.

Photo: SOLA

SOLA is Afghanistan’s first boarding school for girls. She is also an ambassador for Girl Rising, a global campaign for girls’ education, Tedx speaker and was recently named one of National Geographic’s 2014 Emerging Explorers as well as one of CNN International’s Leading Women of 2014.

2. Freshta Karim, 27, Founder Charmaghz

Photo: The National

Freshta is the founder of Charmaghz, a mobile library in a bus, bringing books and reading materials to the most disadvantaged children of Afghanistan. She has been recognised as a social entrepreneur by Forbes 30 under 30 Asia for her incredible work.

Photo: Charmaghz

After graduating from Oxford and returning to Afghanistan, Freshta set up Charmaghz, which means walnut or can further be translated literally as four brains. In a war-torn country like Afghanistan, where few have access to education, the bus travels regularly throughout Kabul to bring the light of knowledge to the children of the nation living a life of darkness in country plagued by poverty, instability and corruption.

3. Tamana Assey, 26, Program Director, AFSO

Photo: One World

Tamana is a medical doctor on a mission. She is the program director of Afghanistan Forensic Science Organization (AFSO). Since 2016, she has been campaigning to ban the immoral and unscientific practice of virginity testing in Afghanistan. She is carried out research, facilitated debates and trained lawyers in order to raise public awareness and protect victims. As a result of her teams’ work, forced hymen-testing was criminalised in the new penal code in May 2017. She has been recognised by Forbes 30 under 30 Asia for her work in the healthcare sector.