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Pashtana Durrani

Executive Director, LEARN Afghanistan

Afghanistan · Class of 2020

At just 21 years old, Pashtana is a passionate human-rights activist. Pashtana says that her only fear in life is giving up her fight to improve the human-rights of those around her. Nothing else, not the Taliban, drones, nor bombs she’s seen fall, scare her or distract her from her work. Pashtana started five digital schools that currently educate around 900 students in Afghanistan who are caught in conflict zones or rural areas. In addition to her incredible work providing quality education to some of Afghanistan’s most hard-to-reach areas, Pashtana is a fierce abortion-rights activist. She provides human rights and advocacy training to girls and women between the ages of 16 and 22, teaching them about political activism, abortion rights, and family planning in addition to their normal coursework. Pashtana hopes to pursue a PhD in rural development and gender to continue to make a difference for women across Afghanistan.