Women's Leadership and Empowerment

Historical gender inequities have favored and promoted men in leadership roles, and as a result, institutions and organizations have often lacked the balanced perspective which would result from greater contributions by women. Qualities such as nurturing, empathy, and compassion are antidotes to today’s divisive politics and cynicism.

It is important to understand the beliefs and traditions that have historically excluded women from equal representation and positions of leadership.  We look to advocate for women rising up worldwide against oppression and exploitation.

Advocating for Women

Historical gender inequities have favored and promoted men in leadership roles, and as a result, institutions and organizations have often lacked the balanced perspective which would result from greater contributions by women. Qualities such as nurturing, empathy, and compassion are antidotes to today’s divisive politics and cynicism.

It is important to understand the beliefs and traditions that have historically excluded women from equal representation and positions of leadership.  We look to advocate for women rising up worldwide against oppression and exploitation.

Christopher Peters (Puhlik-lah/Karuk)

Prof. Dr. Azza Karam is Secretary-General of Religions for Peace and holds a Professorship of Religion and Development at the Vrije Universiteit in Amsterdam. Dr. Karam has an extensive diplomatic and interreligious background and she has held several positions at the United Nations since 2004, and other inter-governmental and non-governmental organizations for close to 30 years.

Christopher Peters (Puhlik-lah/Karuk)

Prof. Dr. Azza Karam is Secretary-General of Religions for Peace and holds a Professorship of Religion and Development at the Vrije Universiteit in Amsterdam. Dr. Karam has an extensive diplomatic and interreligious background and she has held several positions at the United Nations since 2004, and other inter-governmental and non-governmental organizations for close to 30 years.

Event
June 25, 2021

Inner and Outer Peace, A Conversation

Jonathon Granoff, J.D.
Prof. Dr. Azza Karam
Audrey E. Kitagawa, J.D.

Peace on Earth can become a reality-but it starts with peace within each heart. How can we bring peace to the world if we don't have peace within ourselves?

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Video
May 19, 2021

A Narrative of Love: Dr. Azza Karam on Religion, Dialogue and Love

Prof. Dr. Azza Karam

Spirit of Humanity Forum. A Narrative of Love is a series of conversations with thought-leaders and spiritual teachers about their understanding of the significance of love in our personal and public lives hosted by Dr. Scherto Gill - In this conversation Dr. Scherto Gill talks with Prof. Azza Karam, Ph.D. Secretary General, Religion for Peace.

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Publication
May 12, 2021

Violence Against Civilians in Gaza and Jerusalem is … Failed Leadership

The violence against civilians in Gaza and in Jerusalem must stop. This violence is – further and deadly – evidence of failed leadership, in every sense.

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Event
May 5, 2021

Sexual Harassment in Interfaith Spaces

Prof. Dr. Azza Karam
Audrey E. Kitagawa, J.D.
Cassandra Lawrence

An exploratory conversation, aimed at understanding the various aspects of the challenges that religious institutions share with the society at large, in dealing with issues of sexual harassment.

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Publication
April 29, 2021

Keeping Faith in Interfaith Dialogue: Hans Küng and Global Religious Collaboration for Positive Peace

Prof. Dr. Azza Karam

Prof. Dr. Azza Karam shares her perspective on the works of Hans Küng, and the belief she shares that alteration in consciousness is reached through living one’s faith in actions of service beyond self and without discrimination and distinctions.

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Audio
February 24, 2021

Faith, Sport, and Love, actually (with guest, Dr. Azza Karam)

Prof. Dr. Azza Karam

Sport for Humanity combines the passion for sport with the values of faith to serve humanity. In this episode, David explores the relevance of Faith and Sport, and Faith in Sport, with Dr. Azza Karam.

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Publication
February 2, 2021

OPINION: A Counter-Narrative? Ruminations Around Holocaust Awareness Day

Prof. Dr. Azza Karam

For more than two decades, the mantra was “PVE” (preventing violent extremism) and/or “CVE” (countering violent extremism).

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Video
November 24, 2020

A Dialogue of Love: Interreligious Cooperation and Global Well-Being

Prof. Dr. Azza Karam

In the Annual John Paul II Lecture on Interfaith Understanding, Professor Azza Karam, secretary general of Religions for Peace International, discusses how multi-faith alliances can further peace and well-being in our fractured world.

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Video
October 13, 2020

Eco Justice for All

Prof. Dr. Azza Karam

The Temple of Understanding hosted a conversation on Facebook with Prof. Dr. Azza Karam, secretary general of Religions for Peace and she discusses the interconnectedness between human rights and a thriving ecosystem.

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Video
October 8, 2020

Multi-Faith Actions: The Tipping Point for 'Peace'

Prof. Dr. Azza Karam

This presentation addresses key questions that include: What do we mean when we speak of “religions” in the nexus of peace, human rights and security? How has the United Nations, engaged ‘religions’ in its own peace efforts? What are the implications of this on the work of the UN of religious institutions?

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Video
October 6, 2020

Keynote speech on Religion and Women, Peace and Security by Azza Karam

Prof. Dr. Azza Karam

Prof. Dr. Azza Karam’s perspective on working inside the UN on religion and women’s issues. A history of her career at the UN and what she saw and learned.

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Video
June 23, 2020

Woolf Institute - An Episode from the COVID-19 Chronicles

Prof. Dr. Azza Karam

In this episode, Dr. Ed Kessler from the Woolfe Institute, speaks with Professor Azza Karam. Azza is the Secretary General of Religions for Peace in New York, USA.

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Publication
February 1, 2015

Education as the Pathway towards Gender Equality

Prof. Dr. Azza Karam

Gender-based discrimination in education is, in effect, both a cause and a consequence of deep-rooted differences in society. Disparities, whether in terms of poverty, ethnic background, disability, or traditional attitudes about their status and role all undermine the ability of women and girls to exercise their rights.

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Audio
April 29, 2013

Our Sacred Journey: Faith, International Development, and the United Nations

Prof. Dr. Azza Karam
Audrey E. Kitagawa, J.D.

Audrey Kitagawa interviews Dr. Azza Karam and explores how her parents influenced the development of her values and character...

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Christopher Peters (Puhlik-lah/Karuk)

Sadhvi Bhagawati Saraswati, Ph.D. is a renowned spiritual leader and author who has done extensive work on the upliftment and empowerment of women, as well as numerous humanitarian projects. She is Secretary-General of the Global Interfaith WASH Alliance, an international interfaith organization dedicated to clean water, sanitation & hygiene, President of Divine Shakti Foundation, a foundation which runs free schools, vocational training programs and empowerment programs, and Director of the International Yoga Festival at Parmarth.

Christopher Peters (Puhlik-lah/Karuk)

Sadhvi Bhagawati Saraswati, Ph.D. is a renowned spiritual leader and author who has done extensive work on the upliftment and empowerment of women, as well as numerous humanitarian projects. She is Secretary-General of the Global Interfaith WASH Alliance, an international interfaith organization dedicated to clean water, sanitation & hygiene, President of Divine Shakti Foundation, a foundation which runs free schools, vocational training programs and empowerment programs, and Director of the International Yoga Festival at Parmarth.

Event
June 25, 2021

Inner and Outer Peace, A Conversation

Jonathon Granoff, J.D.
Prof. Dr. Azza Karam
Audrey E. Kitagawa, J.D.

Peace on Earth can become a reality-but it starts with peace within each heart. How can we bring peace to the world if we don't have peace within ourselves?

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Video
November 20, 2020

Menstruation & the Divine Worshipable Shakti

Sadhvi Bhagawati Saraswati, Ph.D.

Sadhvi Bhagawati Saraswati, Ph.D. shared important insights about Menstrual Hygiene Management - perhaps one of the most-important and least-discussed health issues facing so many women across India and around the world and an important element in so many of the United Nations' sustainable development goals.

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Video
July 15, 2019

The Annual Kofi Annan Faith Briefings - July 15, 2019

Sadhvi Bhagawati Saraswati, Ph.D.

Sadhvi Bhagawati Saraswati, Ph.D., Secretary-General of Global Interfaith WASH Alliance and President of Divine Shakti Foundation, speaks at the The Annual Kofi Annan Faith Briefings. Multi-Religious Perspective on the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) Panel 2: Discussion on good practices and evidence on actions taken by religious leaders to safeguard children’s rights. Prof. Dr. Azza Karam is the moderator of this panel.

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Video
March 10, 2018

Science Meets Spirituality with Sadhvi Bhagawatiji and Dr. Bruce Lipton (March 2018)

Sadhvi Bhagawati Saraswati, Ph.D.

Parmath Niketan -- In this question-and-answer session, Sadhvi Bhagawati Saraswatiji and renowned scientist Dr. Bruce Lipton share their profound wisdom about transformation of cells in our body through yoga, and beautifully explains the connection between science and spirituality.

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Video
February 3, 2018

The Role of Women in Peace

Sadhvi Bhagawati Saraswati, Ph.D.

Sadhvi Bhagawati Saraswati, Ph.D. discusses the nature of the feminine in society, and how embracing and focusing the positive aspects of that nature have the power to bring people together and manifest beneficial changes at home and world-wide.

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Video
October 1, 2017

Save The Girl Child

Sadhvi Bhagawati Saraswati, Ph.D.

Sadhviji Bhagawati Saraswati, Ph.D. shares on International Save the Girl Child Day the importance of honoring girls and woman. She discusses the unique, incomparable, essential contributions of girls and women.

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Video
May 16, 2017

From Hollywood to Holy Woods | Sadhvi Bhagawati Saraswati | TED Talk

Sadhvi Bhagawati Saraswati, Ph.D.

Sadhvi Bhagawati Saraswati shares the story of growing up in Hollywood, graduating from Stanford then having a spiritual awakening on the Ganges River while on a backpacking trip to India. She provides the powerful insights and simple lessons that have transformed her life from pieces to peace. Formation of the WASH alliance.

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Video
February 11, 2017

Humble Leadership

Sadhvi Bhagawati Saraswati, Ph.D

What makes a good leader? A good leader needs not only charisma but also direction! What ensures that someone’s character, morals and ethics are likely to inspire and elevate – or, conversely, repel and extinguish?

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Christopher Peters (Puhlik-lah/Karuk)

Dr. Monica Sharma, author of the award-winning book “Radical Transformational Leadership” is a trained physician and epidemiologist who worked for the United Nations for over 20 years. Dr. Sharma has redefined “Development” of the individual and the collective to include the further reaches of human and cultural capabilities, to discover a deeper engagement with our humanity and nature, our Being, intellect and emotion, our inner and outer worlds with its invisible norms and patterns.

Christopher Peters (Puhlik-lah/Karuk)

Dr.Sakena Yacoobi is Founder and Executive Director of the Afghan Institute of Learning, which provides teacher training, education, and health education; and Founder and Executive Director of Creating Hope International, which supports communities in Afghanistan and India in providing food, shelter, healthcare, employment, and education services. Dr. Yacoobi has received numerous awards for her international humanitarian works.

Video
March 2, 2021

A Conversation with Dr. Monica Sharma and Audrey Kitagawa

Dr. Monica Sharma
Audrey E. Kitagawa, J.D.

Audrey Kitagawa and International Academy for Multicultural Cooperation Advisor Dr. Monica Sharma discuss Dr. Sharma’s book, Radical Transformational Leadership, and her philosophical and spiritual approach to her works.

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Video
February 28, 2021

Radical Transformational Leadership - Our Perspective

Dr. Monica Sharma

Radical Transformational Leadership is about becoming the change agent the world needs today, through a type of leadership that can transform societal patterns to create a world that works for everyone. It is based on the three human attributes of compassion, dignity and equity.

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Video
September 11, 2020

Ahimsa Conversation # 28 Monica Sharma

Dr. Monica Sharma

Ahimsa is made possible by the innate capacity of human beings to care beyond the self. Dr. Monica Sharma has developed a process for enabling people to tap into this capability. She did this over three decades of work in diverse contexts across the world.

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Video
August 23, 2018

Prosperity and Wellbeing – Beyond Money and GDP

In this program Hazel Henderson explores with Dr. Monica Sharma, author of Radical Transformational Leadership (2018). How the worship of money and the fetishism of measuring national progress by GDP-growth can be clarified.

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Video
August 20, 2018

Empowering Our Personal and Professional Journeys

Dr. Monica Sharma

In this program Hazel Henderson explores with Dr. Monica Sharma, author of Radical Transformational Leadership (2018) her personal story growing up in India. How she practiced medicine there and grew to understand the importance for human health of looking at her patients' life circumstances and their environments. Dr. Sharma became a leader in many United Nations health initiatives and her leadership style can inspire and empower many others.

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Publication
November 21, 2017

Radical Transformational Leadership

Dr. Monica Sharma

Radical Transformational Leadership describes how we can source our inner capacities and wisdom to manifest change that embodies universal values of dignity, compassion and fairness, and simultaneously transform unworkable systems and norms in order to solve problems.

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Christopher Peters (Puhlik-lah/Karuk)

Dr.Sakena Yacoobi is Founder and Executive Director of the Afghan Institute of Learning, which provides teacher training, education, and health education; and Founder and Executive Director of Creating Hope International, which supports communities in Afghanistan and India in providing food, shelter, healthcare, employment, and education services. Dr. Yacoobi has received numerous awards for her international humanitarian works.

Christopher Peters (Puhlik-lah/Karuk)

Dr.Sakena Yacoobi is Founder and Executive Director of the Afghan Institute of Learning, which provides teacher training, education, and health education; and Founder and Executive Director of Creating Hope International, which supports communities in Afghanistan and India in providing food, shelter, healthcare, employment, and education services. Dr. Yacoobi has received numerous awards for her international humanitarian works.

Video
January 12, 2021

Dr. Sakena Yacoobi - Afghan Institute of Learning - COVID-19 Response

Dr. Sakena Yacoobi

Dr. Sakena Yacoobi describes how COVID-19 has affected the people in Afghanistan and how her education organization AIL has adapted their work to respond to the pandemic.

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Video
April 24, 2020

2020 Aurora Humanitarian - Dr. Sakena Yacoobi

Dr. Sakena Yacoobi

2020 Aurora Humanitarian Dr. Sakena Yacoobi is a human rights activist and educator, and Founder of the Afghan Institute of Learning (AIL)

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Publication
December 21, 2016

Dr. Sakena Yacoobi Awarded 2017 Sunhak Peace Prize

Dr. Sakena Yacoobi

It is a great honor to be chosen as a 2017 Sunhak Peace Prize Laureate. This year the Sunhak Peace Prize focuses its attention on the global refugee crisis. It is a privilege to be recognized along with Dr. Gino Strada as someone who has contributed to helping refugees and helping in their resettlement.

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Video
May 1, 2016

ASU GSV Summit Speech

Dr. Saken Yacoobi

Dr. Sakena Yacoobi, Founder and Executive Director, Afghan Institute of Learning and recipient of the 2016 McGraw Prize in Education speaks at the ASU Global Silicon Valley Summit.

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Video
November 18, 2015

2015 WISE Prize Laureate Dr. Sakena Yacoobi Special Address

Dr. Sakena Yacoobi

2015 WISE Prize for Education laureate Dr. Sakena Yacoobi shares her personal motivations that led her to create the Afghan Institute of Learning (AIL).

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Video
November 16, 2015

2015 WISE Prize for Education laureate-Dr. Sakena Yacoobi

Dr. Sakena Yacoobi

Dr. Sakena Yacoobi, Founder and Executive Director of the Afghan Institute of Learning (AIL) has been named the 2015 WISE Prize for Education Laureate.

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Video
October 12, 2015

How I Stopped The Taliban From Shutting Down My School

Dr. Sakena Yacoobi

When the Taliban closed all the girls’ schools in Afghanistan, Sakena Yacoobi set up new schools, in secret, educating thousands of women and men.

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Video
November 13, 2013

Dr. Sakena Yacoobi - Opus Prize 2013

Dr. Sakena Yacoobi

Sakena Yacoobi, founder of the Afghan Institute of Learning, is the winner of the 2013 Opus Prize. The Opus Prize honors unsung heroes of any faith tradition for efforts to solve today's most persistent and pressing global issues, including poverty, illiteracy, hunger, disease, and injustice.

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Video
September 13, 2012

Dr. Sakena Yacoobi on Educating Women and Girls in Afghanistan | Independent Lens | PBS

Dr. Sakena Yacoobi

Dr. Sakena Yacoobi has made a difference in the lives of around 8.5 million people through the operation of learning facilities in Afghanistan over the course of twenty years.

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Audio
June 18, 2012

Our Sacred Journey: Awakening a Traumatized Nation Through Love, Spirituality and Forgiveness

Dr. Sakena Yacoobi
Audrey E. Kitagawa, J.D.

Audrey Kitagawa interviews Dr. Sakena Yacoobi. She talked about what motivated her to start the Afghan Institute of Learning...

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