Evening of Hope to Benefit Afghan Women & Children – Nooristan Foundation

On Thursday, October 24th, I attended the Evening of Hope Gala to Benefit Afghan Women & Children hosted by The Nooristan Foundation, at the residence of the Indian Ambassador to the United States, Nirupama Rao. Special guests included Washington diplomats and Congressman, including Mr. and Mrs. Ed Royce.  The event raised money for a great cause which you can read about more here: http://www.nooristanfoundation.org.  Helping Afghans is a passion for me and my family – we feel that we are lucky to live in the U.S. and the least we can do is raise money to help those in need such as building schools, supporting entrepreneurship programs for women, housing families in refugee camps, and much more.  Thank you to all the kind donors and supporters who came that evening, especially Leonie Industries – they donated $5,000 to Nooristan Foundation!

Unfortunately, the world has a negative view of Afghans because of the media, especially after 9/11. People don’t realize that the country boasts thousands of  years of rich art, history and culture. Part of the culture is traditional Afghan dress and embroideries which have inspired my fashion designs. I love studying the various embroidery techniques among the different tribes, and understanding how their lifestyles impact their dress.  So, it was only fitting that we all wore Afghan dresses to this important event in order to “represent” our birth country.  I wore a custom black “East Meets West” Afghan dress, in a longer style, designed by my sis Mariam when she was in Kabul.  I love the silver embroidered bodice and sleeves. My sisters, cousins and friends also wore traditional Afghan dresses which are known for their vibrant colors, fabrics, embroideries and cuts.

Apologies for the not-so-high quality of many of the  pics. We were instructed not to bring in cameras for security reasons, so I had to take pics with my phone.  We were lucky enough to find someone who did bring a camera (thanks Mr. Abdullah Noori!) to snap a few higher quality pics:

2013 Evening of Hope GROUP

From left to right: My sister Alina, my cousin Roya, my cousin Hangama, me, my dear friend Senzel, the U.S. Ambassador to India Ms. Nirupama Rao, Ms. Hakimi (wife of Afghan Ambassador the U.S), my mom Guli, my aunt Schameya, my sister Mariam in a purple flower caftan I designed, and Arian Ahmadi

2013 Evening of Hope GROUP 2

2013 Evening of Hope GROUP 3

Mom Dad

My mother, Guli, and father, Nadir Atash, speaking with the Ambassador


My aunt Mary and colleague Mr. Abdullah Noori


Yama Keshawerz and my sis Mariam Atash


Mariam and Congressman Ed Royce



Members of Leonie Industries – they donated $5,000 to Nooristan Foundation!photo

photo (1)photo (2)Sam SenzSam Roya 2