Ms. Asma Chaudry

Ms. Asma Chaudry from Pakistan was born into a family of educators and medical doctors. As a baby, she moved to England with her parents, and couple of years later, her family moved to Nigeria where they spent many years in the northern part of the country (Gusau, Kontagora and New Bussa on River Niger). Her earliest memory of life in Africa is lying in bed early in the morning and listening to the sound of women chattering and pounding food using large wooden thistles and mortars!

She received her high school education in Botswana before returning to Pakistan to go to medical school, following in the footstep of female medical doctors in her family. In a family which was a pioneer in leading the way for female education the medical profession was the accepted form of employment for girls. Asma became the first to rebel against that tradition and ended up with a BA in Economics, English Literature and Philosophy. After two years of medical school, dissecting a frog was the last straw!! While in college, she worked as a freelance writer for women magazines, including a Karachi-based magazine called She.

For the past fifteen years, she has lived with her family in Oslo, Norway, where she is in graduate school. She is committed to her work on behalf of immigrant women through a women’s club she founded in 2003. With a focus on female empowerment and sustainable development, the club mobilizes women as mothers for promoting integration, cultural sensitivity and religious tolerance in European societies.

For me there are three things that are very important when it comes to female empowerment: education, financial independence and legal literacy. These are the cornerstones on which I endeavour to build up the need for female empowerment. I am currently at university and continue working for women and with women. They are our future, literally. Having travelled around the world I still believe African women are a combination of beauty, grace and power.