CAHR urges the resumption of Afghan Chevening Scholarships
We urge the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office to resume the support for students from Afghanistan and ensure that the 2023/24 Afghan Chevening cohort will be able to pursue their studies in the UK.
Chevening Scholarships are awarded to “outstanding emerging leaders” from around the world by British Embassies and High Commissions. They provide one year of fully funded postgraduate study in UK.
Over the years, the Centre for Applied Human Rights (CAHR) has hosted over 40 Scholars on our two human rights masters programmes. Students have come from Afghanistan, Argentina, Bangladesh, Egypt, Lebanon, Lesotho, Malaysia, Mexico, Montenegro, Nigeria, Pakistan, Palestine, Syria, and Thailand.
Professor Paul Gready, co-director of CAHR, notes: “Chevening Scholars have made an immense contribution to our applied teaching, and in general to the life of CAHR, the University, and the City of York. Drawing on their experiences of human rights activism in their home countries, Chevening Scholars have enriched our understanding of creative human rights practice on the ground. In turn, the students have developed new knowledge, skills, and supportive international networks to enable them to contribute more effectively to the human rights movements in their countries.”
One month before the Chevening applications are due, a decision is yet to be made on whether Afghan applicants will be able to submit their files. We urge the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) to resume the support for students from Afghanistan and ensure that the 2023/24 Afghan Chevening cohort will be able to pursue their studies in the UK.
Dr Ioana Cismas, co-director of CAHR, notes: “It is precisely in contexts such as that in Afghanistan where investment in the future generation of leaders is most pressing. We have been told by former CAHR Chevening scholars from Afghanistan that tens of their co-nationals are ready to submit their applications. For these emerging leaders from Afghanistan, the Chevening Scholarship programme represents far more than a personal opportunity to further their knowledge and skills – it represents hope in a better future for their country. This, after all, is the very ethos of the Chevening Scholarships.”
CAHR will host an event with former Chevening scholars from Afghanistan on 3 November 2022. They will be talking about women’s rights and the humanitarian situation in the country, and the response of the international community. Venue and time to be confirmed in due course on our website.