As a small child growing up in Afghanistan, Rahila Haidary was eager to attend school but had to dress as a boy to gain entry. Subsequent threats against her family forced Rahila and her parents to flee their homeland. After many years of displacement and distress, Rahila arrived in Australia as a refugee.
Since then, Rahila has become an outstanding young leader who has generously shared her own stories and used her rich intellectual capital to promote understanding of the refugee experience, strengthen cross-cultural empathy, and advocate for gender equality and human rights.
She has taken stages nationally and internationally as a keynote speaker and has played a significant role in documentaries, including ‘Is Australia Racist?’, to challenge discrimination and existing attitudes to refugees.
A Youth Development Officer, Rahila is deeply committed to her work enhancing community cohesion and human rights.