Razia's Ray of Hope

Razia’s Ray of Hope News

News about the foundation, girls' education, and women's rights in Afghanistan

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Save the Date for Boston Event with Author Khaled Hosseini!

FKhaled Hosseiniriends in the New England area: We're hard at work on a special event scheduled for Saturday, April 12, 2014. Be sure to save the date on your calendar and stay tuned for details. Here's a hint: Our plans include good friend and award-winning author Khaled Hosseini. (Now you're taking note, aren't you!)

We promise we won't keep you in the dark for much longer.

(Khaled's headshot © Elena Seibert.)






Philanthropic Panda: Initial Empowerment Necklaces

Initial Empowerment NecklacesWe're delighted to share a special collection of Initial Empowerment Necklaces created by Megan Gupta of Philanthropic Panda. Each sterling-silver initial is made to order -- and your purchase pays for one month of school for one of our students!

The story of Philanthropic Panda is beautiful and inspiring. Megan Gupta had the idea to start Philanthropic Panda in a period when something seemed to be missing in her life. She felt as though she not giving enough back to her community; she also wasn't making jewelry and missed her favorite creative outlet. When she opened her shop, it was strictly a hobby. She continued working full-time, made jewelry in the evenings and weekends, and donated all proceeds to nonprofits. Shortly after she started Philanthropic Panda, her now husband changed the course of her life by inviting her to go backpacking and volunteering in Southeast Asia. The pair met many incredible people and had many eye-opening experiences that have shaped Philanthropic Panda's mission.

Upon her return to the US, Megan found a job at a nonprofit assisting people with disabilities in their job searches and made jewelry on the side. Recently, the nonprofit where she worked closed allowing her to focus all of her energy on growing Philanthropic Panda. In order to maintain the business, Philanthropic Panda now donates 10% of all profits (or more when an Empowerment Piece is purchased) to organizations working to eliminate poverty through sustainable and culturally sensitive solutions.

Our heartfelt thanks to Megan for her support and this beautiful initiative.

The Rotarian: A Dangerous Idea Offers Hope for Girls in Afghanistan

Rotarian MagazineRazia Jan is featured in the December 2013 issue of The Rotarian Magazine! An excerpt from the interview: "One of the first things we do is to teach the girls how to write their father’s name. Then they take it home to show their parents. The fathers have come up to me, crying: 'These girls can write my name, and I can’t.' That is a big moment. I have proved to the men of these seven villages that this is the best thing that’s happened for their daughters -- to become educated. The girls are more independent. They can talk to their father or talk to their mother and share their opinions. They can speak for themselves now. We were having a discussion in class one day and one of them stood up and said, 'You shouldn’t worry about what the world thinks.' They couldn’t say this before." Read the full article here


Last Day of School, 2013!

Congratulations to the students of the Zabuli Education Center for finishing another successful school year! We're so proud of you!

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