Roqiya’s Story: Growing Confidence and Giving Back

In Afghanistan, the recent return to power of the Taliban has affected and displaced millions of families, especially threatening important progress towards gender equality and women with unique challenges. While immigrant and refugee women come to Canada seeking safer futures and better opportunities, they still face barriers and discrimination due to their gender and newcomer status. However, with PIRS’ trauma-informed support networks and resources, newcomer women can thrive and enrich our communities as they share their knowledge and experiences!

Meet Roqiya, a mother of four from Afghanistan with a powerful story of growing confidence and giving back.

Roqiya is a mother of four from Afghanistan currently residing in New Westminster. She has been an active participant in PIRS programs and has developed her English language and leadership skills, as well as her confidence. PIRS’ quality childcare made it possible for her to pursue her passions while we took care of her children and helped them transition into Canadian life and education too. Because of the support offered by PIRS’ multi-leveled, trauma-informed programming, Roqiya was able to step into her true potential.

Since joining the PIRS community, Roqiya has put her English and leadership skills to use by starting her own non-profit organization, fighting poverty and child labour in Afghanistan and supporting refugees as they arrive in Canada. When the pandemic began, Roqiya and her family wanted to further assist their local community, as they converted their thrift store into a food hamper distribution program. It has always been Roqiya’s desire to improve her English public speaking skills, so that she could communicate with her community in Canada and make a difference too.

With the support of PIRS, Roqiya was able to not only strengthen her own English language skills, but also use her leadership to improve the lives of so many in her community. Participants like Roqiya remind us of the continuous impact that being a part of the PIRS community can have, because when women are supported and empowered, our entire community stands stronger.

Let’s work together to make it possible for women like Roqiya to increase their confidence, build English literacy and leadership skills and connections to community, and embolden them to pursue their visions. When women are supported and empowered, our entire community stands stronger.

Through the support of our community, we can equip refugee women with what they need to not only survive, but also to thrive in Canadian life. We appreciate your contribution toward the PIRS Afghan Women Fund, through which we aim to support 50 newcomer families from Afghanistan with trauma-informed English language classes, accessible childcare, and Dari or Pashto speaking, culturally relevant outreach support.