ANI Photo | Afghanistan’s visually impaired woman feted with US Women of Courage Award

In a recent announcement, the US Department of State revealed that Benafsha Yaqoobi from Afghanistan is among the distinguished recipients of the 2024 Women of Courage Award, Khaama Press reported.
The statement recognised Yaqoobi for her unwavering commitment to supporting visually impaired individuals in Afghanistan.
The commendation extended to Yaqoobi highlighted her extensive work as a defence lawyer, specifically advocating for women survivors of violence. Together with her husband, she co-founded the “Rahyab Organisation” in 2008, focusing on the education and empowerment of visually impaired individuals in the region, according to Khaama Press.
Notably, Yaqoobi herself is visually impaired, and the US State Department acknowledged her tireless efforts in advocating for the rights of disabled citizens in Afghanistan. The Women of Courage Award, an annual honour, is bestowed upon women who have demonstrated exceptional contributions in peace, justice, courage, leadership, human rights, and gender equality.
While currently residing outside of Afghanistan, Yaqoobi is set to receive the prestigious award on March 4th. Afghanistan, having acceded to the International Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities in 2012, is committed to providing essential support, including healthcare and education, for visually impaired individuals.
Amidst these commendations, Yazdani Parast, a blind journalist, conveyed concerns to Khaama Press about diminishing attention from supporting organisations for visually impaired individuals in Afghanistan. Parast emphasised the urgent need for assistance, especially during the cold winter season and the upcoming month of Ramadan.
Though precise data on the current number of visually impaired individuals in Afghanistan is unavailable, UN estimates from 2016 indicated that their numbers exceeded 400,000, with 1.5 million individuals experiencing visual impairments, Khaama Press reported.

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