Girls attend class at an undisclosed location in Afghanistan. Photo Credit: Thomson Reuters Foundation/Handout by LEARN

Society Afghanistan3. November 2021

“Secret” Classes Going Strong for Afghani Women

Across Afghanistan, young women determined to continue studying are taking online lessons to pursue their education, thanks to organizations that offer encrypted virtual classrooms.

“You can be locked at home (and) explore the virtual world without any hesitation, without worrying about geographical boundaries. That’s the beauty of technology,” says Fereshteh Forough, the CEO and founder of Code to Inspire (CTI). “Education allows [these young women] to take care of their health, have a stronger voice in their family, prevent domestic violence and become breadwinners. We wanted to continue our mission.”

Secret online lessons offered by CTI and the nonprofit LEARN allow women to study a large variety of domains. CTI – Afghanistan’s first all-female coding academy – teaches not only coding, but English, graphic design, and mobile application development. The course content is uploaded online, and their students receive laptops and Internet packages. As for LEARN, their 100 female students learn science, technology, engineering and mathematics on tablets. According to UNICEF, in 2018, more than 3.6 girls enrolled in school across the country, and in 2020, roughly 6% of women had access to tertiary education, an increase from 1.8% in 2011.

Thomson Reuters Foundation

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