Raihana Kamal (2012 ISSRPL)

Raihana Kamal is currently earning her BBA in Business Management at the American University of Afghanistan (AUAF) and working as a paralegal with Wassil Law Offices supporting USAID-DAI’s Agricultural Credit Enhancement Program funded by USAID. Raihana holds seven years of experience working in capacity development, grants management for Afghan women-led organizations, administration and project management with multiple international organizations in Afghanistan. In 2011, she was selected to attend the 6-week Study of United States Institutes (SUSI) leadership program hosted by the University of Kansas. During SUSI program, she identified women’s education to be a significant gap in her community which has inspired her to work towards reform as she progresses in her career. She is in the early stages of dialogue with the educational department and community elders in the eastern region of Afghanistan, one of the most conservative parts of the country and where women have little to no access to education. Simultaneously, she is working to obtain legal standing with Afghan Government to raise funds in order to implement her projects to improve education for Afghan women at the grassroots level. In May 2012, Raihana participated in a US International Action conference on a 4-person youth panel where she spoke on Afghan Women’s status in the process of transition at one of the Plenary sessions “On the Front Lines: Youth, Gender, and Political Change”. Earlier this year, Raihana was awarded the title of Young Political Leader by U. S. Ambassador Ryan C. Crocker for her work for Afghan women. Also an aspiring photographer, Raihana won the first place award during the Insight Dubai international cultural photo competition, competing against photographers from 30 countries.