Meetra Alokozay is a self-identified intersectional feminist from Afghanistan. Meetra earned her Bachelor’s in political science and public administration with a minor in law from the American University of Afghanistan. In 2018, Meetra joined Loyola University Chicago as an international Fulbright scholar where she earned her Master’s degree in Women’s Studies and Gender Studies.
As a passionate advocate for social justice and gender equality, Meetra has been working for non-profits since high-school, with a particular focus on promoting girls education and youth empowerment. Meetra contributes to Free Women Writers blog and her recent essay was published in Welcome to the Light: Writings of Emerging Feminist Thinkers project.
Having lived and worked in Afghanistan for most of her life, Meetra recognizes the importance of Education in helping improve girls’ lives in Afghanistan and supporting them in their journey of self- empowerment. Meetra believes Afghan women do not need saviors, they only need global sisterhood and support as they resist and fight extremism every single day. Meetra’s advocacy work is deeply rooted in principles of equity, inclusivity, and intersectionality. Meetra is confident that her passion and knowledge will support Sahar’s mission and create opportunities of self-empowerment for girls and women in Afghanistan through educational programs.
A native of Mazar-e-sharif, Afghanistan, Shogofa traveled to Seattle from Massachusetts to begin her fellowship with Sahar in July of 2018. She earned her Bachelor of Arts in International Relations from Regis College in Weston, Mass., graduating with honors in 2016. During her time at Regis, Shogofa was a member the Pi Gamma Mu International Honor Society in Social Sciences, was accorded the Mary C. Bryan Award for an essay on women’s rights in Afghanistan, and was named a “Pillars of the Community” honoree. Shogofa earned her masters degree in Global Health from University of Washington in 2021.
Shogofa’s childhood education was interrupted in 1996 due to the ascendancy of the Taliban, but she has since dedicated her life to learning and service, with a focus on the rights of girls and women in Afghanistan. She began contributing poetry to the Afghan Women’s Writing Project in 2009 and attended the School of Leadership Afghanistan (SOLA) in 2010 before making her way to the U.S. to further her education. In addition to her studies, Shogofa served as an intern for the Feminist Majority Foundation, contributing to a project aimed at providing more educational programs for women in Afghanistan. She also worked in the office of U.S. Rep. Seth Moulton, researching immigration issues.
Shogofa believes that being a woman in Afghanistan is not about being oppressed, weak and afraid, but rather involves learning what is necessary to become strong. Her desire is to promote the education of women, support their rights, and advocate for gender equality. Shogofa is confident that her passions will be supportive of Sahar’s mission to create real, positive change for the girls and women of Afghanistan.