#SheDares Stories: Amplifying Women's Voices

On Thursday, 7th March 2024, in honour of International Women's Day, we hosted a virtual panel discussion celebrating the lives of courageous women in Sudan, Afghanistan and Palestine.

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#SheDares: Amplifying Women's Voices - IWD Webinar

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📅 Thursday, 7th March, 6pm GMT | 1pm EST

💻Free webinar

📍 Zoom

A Virtual panel discussion celebrating the lives of courageous women

Shedding light on women defying all odds in Sudan, Afghanistan and Palestine

In honour of this year’s International Women’s Day, Women for Women International hosted #SheDares Stories: Amplifying Women's Voices, a virtual panel discussion on Thursday, 7th March 2024. Our panel shed light on the lives of courageous women in Sudan, Afghanistan and Palestine, daring to stand up for their rights and bring change — even in the most difficult and dangerous circumstances.

Watch the recording to hear from the following amazing, daring women: 

  • Basma Khalifa, Writer, Director and Women for Women International UK Ambassador 

  • Sara Wahedi, Technologist, Afghan Activist and Women for Women International US Champion 

  • Amani Mustafa, Country Director, Women for Women International Palestine 

The event was moderated by Marie Clarke, our Chief Programmes Officer at Women for Women International - US. You can read our panel's full bios below.

Meet the speakers

Basma Khalifa

Basma Khalifa

Basma Khalifa is a Sudanese multi-disciplinary director and filmmaker, with a background that spans across Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Northern Ireland, Scotland and now London. After over a decade of experience in the fashion industry, she turned her attention to storytelling, with her debut feature-length documentary, Inside the Real Saudi Arabia, which was broadcast on BBC1 in 2018. The documentary garnered over 10 million views, worldwide syndication, earning Basma a nomination for “Newcomer of the Year” at the Edinburgh TV Festival.

Her contributions to outlets the likes of the BBC, ITN and C4 have solidified Basma’s reputation as a director and a personality with a keen eye for nuanced stories. She is an accomplished writer, contributing to titles such as The Guardian, The Times, CNN and Stylist Magazine and continues to direct commercials and consult for brands.

Sara Wahedi

Sara Wahedi

Sara Wahedi is the Chief Executive Officer and Founder of Ehtesab, Afghanistan's first civic-technology startup. Ehtesab’s flagship platform, the 'Ehtesab App', launched in March 2020, serving as a nationwide alert system but also as a platform for crowdsourced reports, and capturing human rights infringements across Afghanistan. Ehtesab is presently advancing a feature dedicated to recording 'gender apartheid' instances, aiming to strengthen the recognition of gender apartheid as an actionable offence in international jurisprudence. With a vision for 2024, Wahedi intends to extend the platform's reach to other crisis regions globally.

Alongside her work as a technologist, Wahedi is an advisor for venerable entities, including the UN, governments and various NGOs. She provides counsel on the fundamental human right of 'access to information’ and advocates for its protection in global cases.

Wahedi’s pursuit of the democratisation of information in crisis areas has earned her accolades such as TIME Magazine's 'Next Generation Leader', MIT Technology Review's 'Innovators under 35', BBC's 'Top 100 Women', and Forbes '30 Under 30'. In 2023, she was also honoured as One Young World's 'Entrepreneur of the Year’.

Amani Mustafa

Amani Mustafa

Amani Mustafa is Women for Women International - Palestine's Country Director and a Palestinian activist who has courageously confronted the entrenched social and cultural oppressions experienced by many Palestinian women. Educated at Bethlehem University, she holds degrees in English Literature and International Cooperation and Development, and her expertise in women's empowerment programming has been shared globally through her participation in workshops and conferences. With a fervent belief in the empowerment of women to reclaim their rights, she embarked on a journey dedicated to fostering resilience and independence among her fellow Palestinian women.

With an astute grasp of Middle Eastern politics, international relations, and humanitarian rights-based programming, Amani emerges as a formidable advocate, leveraging her eloquence and public speaking skills to champion the rights of Palestinian women on both national and international platforms. Armed with her profound understanding of the socio-political landscape, she orchestrated initiatives to address women's needs by beginning her career with a Palestinian NGO, Amani worked tirelessly to uplift Bedouin Palestinian women in accessing essential services and securing basic necessities in the Southern Slopes of Hebron Governorate.

Transitioning to international agencies, Amani dedicated 16 years of her experience to amplifying Palestinian women's voices and agency across the West Bank and Gaza, steering programmes aimed at bolstering their social power and economic autonomy. 

Marie Clarke

Prior to Women for Women International, Marie Clarke served as ActionAid USA’s Executive Director and a member of various global leadership bodies for the ActionAid International Federation. Ms. Clarke has over twenty years of experience in global development, human rights and economic justice. She currently serves as the elected Northern Civil Society Representative on the Steering Committee of the Global Agriculture and Food Security Programme (GAFSP), a multilateral mechanism created by the G20 for donor countries and institutions to invest in client country agriculture and food security programmes. She has been quoted on issues of women’s rights, agriculture, energy and international economic justice in the Financial Times, Washington Post, New York Times, Los Angeles Times and other publications and has appeared on CNN and CNN International, BBC, Voice Of America and other news networks. 



Women for Women International staff are committed to prioritising the safety of event guests and staff. Harassment and inappropriate behaviour of event guests, panellists, staff or volunteers at our events will not be tolerated and anyone violating this policy at our events may be asked to leave without entitlement to any refund of ticket price. Please click here to read our full safer spaces policy.

Learn more about our work

Women in Afghanistan have seemingly been erased from public life. The de facto government is stripping back their rights, one restriction after another. But two years since the takeover, women refuse to back down. Read about how our brave and defiant Afghan sisters are taking a stand, wielding their power and holding onto hope. 


Women for Women International has been piloting a programme with Women's Rights Organisations in the West Bank to support women who face violence, food insecurity, and unemployment in an area of prolonged conflict. Our work is focused on prevention of and response to violence against women, as well as supporting women to realise their social and economic power. 

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