Here at the Kravis Prize, we are proud that our winners have noble aspirations that impact regions across the globe. This article in the Associated Press highlights our 2009 Prize winner, Sakena Yacoobi, and her tireless efforts to bring education to women and girls in Afghanistan. Yacoobi envisions the work of the Afghan Institute of Leadership (AIL) as a vehicle for peace in the region, although she admits that she is “no idealist” when it comes to large-scale change:

“She said she hopes to one day have centers in every province of Afghanistan ‘and there wouldn’t be one single individual uneducated or not able to read and write,’ Yacoobi says. ‘But reality is reality. Fact is fact. Education takes time. It takes a lot of time.'”

Part of Yacoobi’s approach to making AIL successful is recruiting employees who are “more dedicated to the cause than their paychecks.” “We have lots of students who are with the U.N. programs, the USAID program, they are making triple my salary,” Yacoobi explained. “I say go ahead, do a good job, go. I am proud of them.”

Pragmatic Afghan woman educates thousands [Associated Press]

To learn more about Sakena Yacoobi and AIL, click here.