Afghanistan: Amma Sakinah

With peace we can perceive the real concept of life.

— Amma Sakinah

For the past ten years Amma Sakina has worked on issues such as raising awareness of and campaigning against violations of women and human rights, and the eradication of all forms of discrimination. She works on grassroots as well as on organizational levels where she concerts efforts of community-based groups and NGOs. She has also worked with people with disabilities. Amma advocates education for all children and has run her own house as a school.

Amma's work was triggered by her observation of the extreme injustice and discrimination against women that has prevailed in Afghanistan for decades. As an active participant in the peaceful resistance movement, she witnessed the incarceration for five years of her own son. In spite of these circumstances, she did not waiver in her commitment to achieving her goal of helping women in Afghanistan. At present, Amma works closely with vulnerable people, such as women, children and disabled groups. She is optimistic about the future of women in Afghanistan, especially after the incorporation of an article that codifies equal rights for men and women in the Afghan constitution. In order to set an example for women to gain self-confidence Amma has nominated herself for the presidential elections, and she has now redoubled her activities in the community-based groups. The participation of women in every aspect of life forms the cornerstone of her future vision for a peaceful and prosperous Afghanistan. Warlords and armed groups still dominate large parts of Afghanistan, and violence against women is still quite prevalent. However, Amma believes that there is a need for concerted effort in demilitarizing and rehabilitating the men fighting as guerrillas and to raise the population's awareness of respecting women's and human rights. Despite all these hurdles, Amma’s objective remains the protection and promotion of human rights in general and women's rights in particular.