Richly deserved

Afghan girls’ activist wins $500,000 education prize

Sakena Yacoobi, an Afghan teacher who confronted the Taliban and worked to rebuild education in a country ravaged by war has been awarded the annual WISE prize for achievement in education, which consists of $500,000 to further her cause. “From refugee camps to secret night schools, and often at great personal risk, she established a network of organizations that provide general education as well as public health education,” said Sheikha Moza bint Nasser, the chair of the Qatar Foundation, who presented her with the award on Wednesday. Yacoobi’s organisation, the Afghan Institute of Learning, started as a network of underground schools while the Taliban was in power, but today has grown to 306 teaching centres, four health clinics, a hospital, and an educational radio programme that reaches 12 million listeners. “It is particularly meaningful because this is such a crucial time in Afghanistan” Yacoobi said receiving the award. “My people live in terror and poverty.”

Read the full story at The Independent and BBC.

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