Madrassah Women Engagement

Madrassa in Pakistan either in urban or rural areas enjoy great importance, because they serve the extremely marginalized division of society; yet the growing trend of female enrolment ratio in madrasah has been completely ignored in the whole discourse. Girls are sent to the madrasah not only because of accessibility and affordability, but also because it is known as an education institution that teaches the morality of women within an Islamic context. Female students are expected to be able to properly keep their role in the society by keeping their values. Therfore special emphasis is on mainstreaming unexplored women’s potential found in madrasa.

Women from marganilzed segemnts or minority groups encounter multiple and intersectional discrimination and particularly find themselves in a dismal situation socially and economically. Unfortunately, a considerable number of females are deprived of basic education and rights due to socio-cultural barriers and lack of awareness. Peace and Education Foundation (PEF) aims to promote awearness, and helps in conduct and sponsor capacity-building programs that relate to peace and conflict resolution/transformation theories and practices in different cultural and religious context. The contribution of well-educated women in peace-building is of critical importance because the level of awareness against extremisim and radicalization will increase, and they will be highly sensitized for de-radicalization.

Since 2004, PEF started engaging women from diverse madrasas in Pakistan, keeping in view that mobilizing and empowering women from religious community is desperately needed for systemic reforms in local religious institutions and peace-building. Women engagement and participation is particularly focused by PEF under its multiple programs for madrassah teachers and religious leaders to create female ‘Peace Champions’. These projects engage madrassah women which mainly remain the most overlooked segment and hard to mobilize as well. Sensitizing women in this regard will have a huge social impact on women and future generations.

The purpose of project is to empower women from religious community to improve their status within madrassah through skill enhancement and providing opportunities for professional development. Since female religious actors contributes to peace building at multiple levels in Pakistan it is equally important to sensitize, train and mobilize female religious leaders regarding the menace of radicalization. These female religious leaders have a vast opportunity and influence in peace-building and social transformation in Pakistan.

Facts & Figures

PEF has engaged a total 3,287 females directly through training workshops and follow-up Community Engagement Programs. The trained madrasah teachers and religious leaders are successfully transferring knowledge and skills for the betterment of their institutions and community at large.