TEDxBoston

Rukhsar Habibzai

Afghani Refugee Training for Olympics with Twenty24, women's pro cycling team

Rukhsar Habibzai was the Afghan first women’s cycling team captain. She was forced to leave her country as part of the mass evacuation of vulnerable citizens who faced targeted gender violence by the Taliban. Currently, she rides for Virginia’s Blue Ridge Twenty24, a national cycling team preparing for the Paris Olympics 2024. 

Ms. Habibzai and her team were nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize in 2016 due to their unstoppable endeavors for women’s rights and succeeding in becoming/setting an example for the rest of the world’s women to fight against oppression against women.

Miss Rukhsar has inspired many girls to take a stand for their rights; she continues to do so to this day. She and her team were cycling on many dangerous roads of Afghanistan, where many men did not dare to go. She also participated in many national and international conferences, where she always used her seat for the voice of her peers and to draw attention to the issue of Violence Against Women. Besides being a sportswoman, she studied dentistry to become a more useful asset to the community.