ERBIL, Kurdistan Region—A stronger, more democratic, prosperous future for the Kurdistan Region lies with empowering the nation’s women and supporting them in leadership and decision-making roles, said Sherri Kraham Talabani, co-founder of SEED, in an interview with Rudaw.
Talabani, an American, co-founded Erbil-based SEED (Social Educational Economic Development) with Tanya Gilly-Khailany, originally from Kirkuk, in 2014.
Talabani described SEED is a unique merger of international expertise and experience with local know-how. It is focused on long-term improvement, investing in the people of the Kurdistan Region, giving them the tools they need to improve their lives.
As a lawyer with years of experience working with developing countries and democracies, Talabani applauded the Kurdistan Regional Government for opening their doors to 1.8 million refugees and internally displaced Iraqis, all with very few resources, and lauds the Region for the improvements and advancements it has made, in terms of economics, infrastructure and education.
But, she said, the decades of trauma and persecution the Region has suffered means people, including both the government and the private sector, are in survival mode, thinking only about what they need to do to get through today. She believes the Region needs to start thinking about the future by investing in and strengthening all people, particularly women and youth.