Thanks to Jamila Afghani and the organization she created, Noor Educational and Capacity Development Organization (NECDO). 6,000 imams in Afghanistan have taken gender-sensitivity training
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It is Friday noon in Kabul, Afghanistan, and men dressed in traditional clothes hurry to mosques to pray in congregation. Friday prayers are usually men’s business, and during the Taliban rule in the 1990s, women were not allowed in mosques. But in one neighborhood in the city, an imam has kept the doors of his mosque open to women for 12 years now. Iman Mohammed Ehsan Saikal often preaches about the importance of education for girls. “I have three daughters, and all of them are highly educated and go to work,” he says.
Today, according to Afghani, about 20 percent of Kabul’s mosques have special prayer areas for women, whereas only 15 years ago there were none. The sermons delivered by imams persuade their families to let them study. In fact, some 6,000 imams in Afghanistan have participated in Afghani’s training program.
Despite obstacles and threats, Afghani is committed to continuing her work. “This is our country, and we have to do something better for the next generations. If not me, then who will do it?”
Summary of the article by Maija Liuhto, Contributor The Christian Science Monitor of January 5, 2017