As girls return to school here in the United States, Afghan women and girls continue to suffer under the Taliban’s ban on education for females. The Feminist Majority Foundation’s Back to School Campaign is aimed at improving educational opportunities to Afghan women and girls through scholarships to U.S. universities, an adopt-a-school project to support clandestine home schools for girls in Afghanistan and refugee camp schools in Pakistan, and a petition drive to pressure the U.S. and U.N. to increase aid to the region. Just one week after announcing the campaign, 69 groups have signed on, including the Feminist Majority Leadership Alliance at Brandeis University. Jesse Mostipak, a founding member of the group, was recently interviewed by the Boston Globe, voicing her opposition to the Taliban’s brutal treatment of women. Groups participating in the campaign range from college women’s organizations to high school groups to junior high classrooms to advocacy organizations.
The Globe acknowledged the U.S. State Department’s recent statement that FMF’s Campaign to Stop Gender Apartheid in Afghanistan has produced “as much or more mail than any other foreign policy issue has.” FMF has gathered 211,000 petitions to the U.S. State Department, the White House, and the United Nations, demanding that the U.S. and U.N. put more pressure on the Taliban and the countries that support the terrorist regime.
Media Resources: Feminist Majority Foundation and Boston Globe, A1 – September 1, 2000