Manizha is an extremely articulate advocate for women's rights in Afghanistan. She runs a fashion business called Wonderland Women (website under construction), which provides jobs for many in her community. She also works with two ministries of the Afghan government, steering them toward compliance with regulations that require female participation at all levels, particularly decision-making levels. Lastly, she serves on the Executive Board of the Afghan Women's Network, the largest women's advocacy group in Afghanistan. Manizha recruited a cooperative called Omid Handicrafts to make baby booties for us.
Manizha describes the poverty of the five women who made the baby booties. Some of them are the only breadwinners in their families, as the men were disabled in all the fighting. With the money earned from knitting baby booties, each woman was able to feed her family a meager diet of rice, bread, and vegetables for a month.
Manizha came to Dallas, Oklahoma City, and Chicago for business training with the Peace Through Business Program of the Institute for the Economic Empowerment of Women, a nonprofit based in Oklahoma City. She expressed deep gratitude for all she has learned.