Farkhunda Scholarships


THE FARKHUNDA TRUST was founded by Afghan women’s rights activist Rahela Sidiqi who was determined to improve the situation of women in Afghanistan following the tragic death of Farkhunda Malikzada.

Rahela’s embryonic project was supported by The Afghan Women’s Support Forum whose members are proud to see it flourishing.

THE FARKHUNDA TRUST is an independent organisation however and its members should be contacted via its own website      www.farkhundatrust.org or via  info@farkundatrust.org.

The Trust’s mission  is to provide scholarships and mentoring to exceptional female students. Selected news and reports about its activities will also appear on this page.


Statistics of Women higher education

  • In 2002, right after the Taliban fell, there were only 1,564 female students in universities. 
  • In 2016 out of 53,385 students enrolment at state universities only 11,853 or 22% were female.
  • In total today, there are about 64000 or 21% young women attending university and only 14% of all faculty members are women.
  • This shows great progress but we still have a long way to go to even get to where we were in 1990. Before the Taliban came, 40 percent of those in higher education were women, and 70 present of all teachers were women.
  • The increase number of female student between 2014 and 2016 were 18.6 

General statistics on Women Status and Employment

  • 580 scholarships for graduate and undergraduate inside and outside Afghanistan and in Asian countries
  • There are 35% women have master degree and 1.4% PHD
  • Total number of university students by 2016 was 300,344 students out of which state university students were 171, 609 with 36,362 female students – 21% and 135,247 male students -79%. But female higher education some times is overly reported.
  • Private university students were 128,735 students out of which 27,612 – 21% female’s students and 101,125 male students and 79%.
  • There are 601 faculty 222 state faculty and 378 private faculty in total and 145 Universities 36 state universities and 109 private universities
  • 5% of primary female students complete higher education and in 2014 90% of women were illiterate.
  • 22% of civil servants are female, 2% in security forces, 8% in justice, 27% in lower house and 19% in upper house. 2 women in cabin. 9 Deputy Minister and 4 female Ambassadors.
  • 78 % women face one type of violence and 50% get married at age of 15

Budget used for Education

In 2011, 2% of on budget used for education

Afghanistan Population in 2015 and issues

  • 6 million 14 million women and 20 million live in rural area. 8.6 million live in urban area.
  • Life expectancy is 44 years
  • Child mortality is 154/1000. More then 11 million live with less than $1.24 per day.

Recourses Issues:

Not enough funds to increase female faculties, 100 girls are in same class. Insecurity, lack of electricity, no enough hostel for female students, No guest lecture and lack of financial resources to enable women to use transport and get food. Education quality is poor. 50% of lecturers are bachelors and use mainly old teaching methods. Inadequate autonomy for higher institution. Demand and supply challenges, due to poor education quality. No adequate sanitary for female students in university campus. 2016 survey indicated that only 37% of population believe equal right for women access to education, 40% of college and university female students have mental health and posttraumatic stress.

Source: www.cso.gov.af, https://preserve.lehigh.edu/, https://centralasiainstitute.org, https://sustainabledevelopment.un.org, http://beijing20.unwomen.org/en/about 


The Farkhunda Trust held its First Annual Lecture at the House of Commons on November 23rd, 2017.

Speakers included Rahela Sidiqi (Women’s Higher Education & The Farkhanda Trust); Christine Chinkin (Women’s Education and Security); Baroness Frances D’Souza ( Why We Must Continue Our Work in Afghanistan; HE The Ambassador of Afghanistan to the UK, Said Tayeb Jawad ( Women’s Education and Security in Afghanistan ); Qari Zemarai Babrak ( Why to support Farkhunda Trust ).

The event was opened by Samantha Knights and closed by Interim Chair of the Farkhunda Trust, Kamini Paul.



The five Farkhunda Trust scholars who will be studying at Dunya University in Afghanistan this year received their free laptops last week in a special ceremony led by the Vice Chancellor of Dunya University, Mr Ahmed Shah Sankdel.

As part of the Farkhunda Trust’s scholarship programs, students are able to attend university for free in addition to receiving the tools and support they will need to succeed at school. These include a laptop, stationary and textbooks, mentoring, workshops, transport and lunch.

The recipients of the Farkhunda Trust scholarships to attend Dunya University are: Farzana Muhammadi, Nilab Zarif, Mansura Walizada, Negina Saeedy, and Feroze Amirzai. Their majors range from Law to Politics to Economics.

Thank you to our partners at Dunya University, V-Day, Tides Foundation, and The So and So Art Club for their continued support. Furthermore, we would like to thank all of those who support our £1 a month campaign to support Afghan female higher education.




Farkhunda Trust Anniversary Event – SOAS

On the 29th March 2017, the Farkhunda Trust, in collaboration with the SOAS Afghan Society, held the second anniversary event of the London Vigil that took place in Trafalgar Square on the same date in 2015. The main aim of the event was to raise awareness of the very issues the organisation wishes to tackle and to promote, engage and advance Farkhunda Trust’s mission to get as many disadvantaged yet bright Afghan girls into higher education. The Trust was set up through an initial grant from V-Day/One Billion Rising and continues its work with the support of Tides Foundation, volunteers, British and Irish Agencies Afghanistan Group (BAAG), fundraising events, handicraft-raffle tickets and most importantly through Afghan and British friends personal contributions to the £1 a month fundraising campaign.

Organized and run by a group of incredibly engaged young Afghan-British women, Yusefi, Sahar Yusefi, Ghatoul Sediqi, Dina Wahage, Sunbul Azizzada, the 29th March event included highly-esteemed guest speakers who inspired us with their thoughts and their show of commitment to our organization.

After an informative and well delivered speech by our founder Ms. Rahela Sidiqi, and the volunteers, Mr. Mohammad Asif Noorzai, Consular from the Afghanistan Embassy, kick-started the event as the first speaker who promised his full support and commitment to our £1 a month campaign, strongly encouraging the audience and the wider Afghan community to follow in his generous footsteps and contribute.

Our second speaker was the Vice Chancellor of Dunya University, Mr. Ahmad Shah Sankdel, who had come all the way from Kabul for our event. Mr Sankdel gave a wonderfully inspiring speech congratulating and encouraging the support and dedication of the Afghans

in the diaspora to their home, their people and the issues that strike at the heart of the households of Afghanistan, including financial instability and a lack of access to education. He concluded his speech by promising the admission and scholarship of an additional 3 scholars with zero tuition to come and study at Dunya University.

Our third speaker was the Founder of Afghan Voice Radio, Gharghasht Gharghakht, who gave a speech on the importance of using media in a way that is beneficial and positive. He also cast open the issues that are at the centre of the Afghan community, focusing on missed opportunities which fit precisely with Farkhunda Trust’s ethos. “We will regret as a society the things we could have done to help those whose shoes could easily be ours, whose destinies could easily be our own.”

Our last speaker of the evening – but certainly not the least – was the Founder of Avizeh Jewellery, an inspiring and incredibly creative young Afghan- British woman and entrepreneur. She began her speech by expressing gratitude for the support she has received and for her invitation to speak. Miss Avizeh appealed to the youngsters of the audience by focusing her talk on what constitutes an entrepreneurial spirit. She shared with us the very values and disciplines, such as confidence and inherent creativity, that has given birth to the outstanding success of her business. She also spoke with our founder, Mrs Sidiqi to offer £1 from each sale of her business.

In addition to our speakers, we had notable contributions from guests such as Jawed Ahmadzai who promised to introduce universities for next year to grant more students, access to higher education.

Critically acclaimed Afghan filmmaker, Assad Sekandar, also promised to produce a documentary for Farkhunda Trust, sounding very promising indeed and for which we are massively grateful.

Mr Gharghakht introduced more volunteers including Meral Alizada who has now launched a charity skydiving campaign for the Farkhunda Trust to ensure substantial progress in achieving its short and long-term goals.

Fortunately, the event received a great turnout with both esteemed guest speakers and audience members, and we received positive feedback and encouraging words and comments.

We would like to add as a final point, a huge conveyance of our gratitude for the support we receive daily through emails, messages and our social media outlets.

No young girl should be stripped of her absolute right to an education and together, we can be the collective force that will grant the education of an entire generation.

Thank you very much.

Keynote education event in honour of Farkhunda Malikzada

On the second anniversary of the London Vigil held on 29th March 2015 in honour of Farkhunda Malikzada, a young female student brutally murdered on the streets of Afghanistan, the Farkhunda Trust, with the support of the SOAS Afghan Society, will be holding a presentation, video and discussion on its current efforts to support exceptional young women from deprived backgrounds attain their higher education.

AWSF members and supporters who would like to attend the event should click HERE.

The presentation will be delivered by the Farkhunda Trust’s group of young volunteers who are eager to support their counterparts in Afghanistan to create a network of independent and politically and economically engaged professional women. For more information  click HERE.The event is an awareness raising campaign to support the higher education of young women in Afghanistan. It is also a part of the Farkhunda Trust’s “Empowering Women with One Pound a Month” campaign to help send Afghan women to university.

It has been proven time and time again that when you educate and empower women, their countries prosper. Our ambition at the Farkhunda Trust is not only to provide young women with a college education but also to mentor and support them and to create a network of active, ambitious, and professional women in Afghanistan that engage in the social, economic, and political life of the country.With as little as one pound per month, you can help talented but disadvantaged women in Afghanistan complete their university degrees and achieve their dreams.

Please feel free to join our campaign, by clicking HERE.

There will also be an opportunity to donate at the event itself! The Farkhunda Trust is run by a group of committed, professional volunteers, which means that your donations will benefit Afghan women directly.