Usbekistan: Adiba Akhmedjanova

All of us in our own countries, cities, villages, and families can improve the lives around us. My mission is to communicate this so women will join forces for prosperity and peace in the world.

— Adiba Akhmedjanova

Adiba Akhmedjanova (born 1955) initiated the Women’s Club of International Friendship called Sodruzhestvo (Cooperation) to bring women from different national origins together and promote mutual understanding. Uzbek women from villages can meet people from other countries and become familiar with the culture of different nations. She also founded an association for leadership development for girls and the Association of Women Farmers in the Tashkent Province. She provides women with assistance in the fields of human rights, legal advice and help in setting up small business enterprises.

Adiba Akhmedjanova dreamed of creating a place where women from different nations and cultures could meet and interact with the lives of Uzbek women in villages - a World Women’s Club. She shared this dream with an employee who showed her an old neglected building which could be used for the club. The head of the Tashkent Region Administration supported the idea. But Adiba had no financial support. She and her team worked without any salary and even used their own money to create the club. They contacted the embassies of many countries in Uzbekistan and invited officials to its future location offering the space for exhibitions. Adiba said, “For rural women it would be a window to the world.” At present, 16 countries are exhibited in the space. Rural women can experience different cultures and find new friends. Since the opening of the club, it has become a center of international meetings. Local women meet with foreign diplomats, artists, and writers and learn about different cultures, religions, and traditions. The club offers educational and cultural activities, and about 30 embassies and international organizations participate. “By getting to know each other, we improve our understanding, and this leads to peace, tolerance, and friendship,” Adiba says. In addition to creating international bonds, Adiba works hard to increase literacy among women and to improve their education. She assists women’s NGOs and organizes seminars for rural women in the fields of human rights and legal education. To address unemployment in her region, Adiba has created special programs for women who want to start up their own small businesses. Thanks to Adiba, hundreds of women have found employment. She has built peace through the sharing of international cultures and traditions.

Sodruzhestvo Association of Women Farmers