Afghan woman fights to educate young girls; speaks at ASU Wednesday

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by Crystal Cruz

azfamily.com

Posted on March 20, 2013 at 9:50 AM

Updated Monday, Mar 25 at 11:38 AM

PHOENIX -- She attended a secret school in Afghanistan while under the Taliban rule. Now, she's fighting to educate other young Afghan girls.

Shabana Basij-Rasikh is the co-founder of SOLA, the School of Leadership Afghanistan. It's a non-profit organization dedicated to furthering educational and leadership opportunities in Afghanistan and the world for the new generation of Afghanistan, especially for women.

Basij-Rasikh stopped by "Good Morning! Arizona" Wednesday  to share her story. She talked about the power behind educating women.

"For instance, if India sends one more percent of its girls to school, their GDP will raise by $5.5 billion," she explained.

Kaley O'Kelley asked her about what it was like  to go to an underground school.

"It was obviously not easy because the fear of being caught by the Taliban was constant," she said. "My parents have been my source of inspiration. Every time I felt frustrated it was them who always reminded me that you can lose everything in your life, but your education can never be taken away from you. It's the biggest investment in your life."

That's why she founded SOLA.

"If we want to see Afghanistan prosper and have a great future, we need to invest in educating the next generation, particularly women," she said.

Basij-Rasikh's schedule Wednesday at Arizona State University is as follows: arrive at ASU Memorial Union at 11 a.m., go to the Cereus Hall FM #101 Student Leadership Class and speak. At 3 p.m., Shabana will speak to the  Coalition of International Students.

You can go online to find out more information about her cause.

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