Dr. Sakena Yacoobi
Dr. Sakena Yacoobi is the Director of the Afghan Institute of Learning (AIL), a women-led NGO she founded in 1995 to provide teacher training to Afghan women, to support education, and to provide health education to women and children. Under Sakena’s leadership AIL has established itself as a visionary organization working at the grassroots level and empowering women and communities to find ways to bring education and health services to rural and poor urban girls, women and other poor and disenfranchised Afghans. AIL was the first organization to offer human rights and leadership training to Afghan women and supported 80 underground home schools for 3,000 girls after the Taliban closed girls’ schools in the 1990s. Fortunately, this secrecy is no longer needed and Afghan girls are openly in school. AIL is helping Afghans rebuild their society, and since 1996, millions have benefited from its education and health programs. In 2015, Sakena founded Radio Meraj, a private radio station.