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Afghanistan’s Only Girls Boarding School Plans Expansion in Rwanda

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Shabana Basij-Rasikh the co-founding president of the School of Leadership, Afghanistan (SOLA) is in Rwanda to discuss plans for the schools expansion in the country.

“President Kagame received board members of SOLA and founder Shabana Basij-Rasikh to discuss the school’s progress and plans for expansion in Rwanda,” the Presidency said on Wednesday.

On 15 August 2021, the Taliban entered Afghanistan’s capital city of Kabul and took control of the country.

With Afghanistan in the hands of the Taliban, which had banned young women from formal education, ten days later, nearly 250 people including students, staff, family members of Afghanistan’s only girls boarding school, SOLA, arrived safely in Kigali Rwanda for a “study abroad” session.

According to a new report titled Breaking point by Save the Children, After the Taliban’s takeover last August, thousands of secondary school girls were ordered to stay home, reversing years of progress for gender equality.

More than 45% of girls said they’re not attending school – compared with 20% of boys – listing economic challenges, the Taliban’s ban on girls attending secondary school classes as well as community attitudes as the key barriers preventing them from accessing education.

Chris Nyamandi, Save the Children Country Director in Afghanistan, said, “Girls are bearing the brunt of the deteriorating situation. They’re missing more meals, suffering from isolation and emotional distress and are staying home while boys go to school.”

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