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Listen to the podcast on Inkandescent Radio The author of "Freedom on the Front Lines" is committed to building a better world for women

Don't miss today's interview on Margaritas with Marguerita Change, CFP® Pro, with global women’s rights expert, author Lina AbirAfeh, an international activist who creates innovative solutions to global women’s rights challenges.


Meet Lina AbiRafeh, a global women’s rights expert, author, and speaker who creates innovative solutions to global women’s rights challenges

A Note from Marguerita Cheng, CFP® Pro — I invite you to tune in for this week’s episode of my podcast and video show, Margaritas with Marguerita, where for 15 minutes, we learn from industry experts how to flex our financial muscles.

Meet our guest: Lina AbiRafeh, author and international women’s rights activist

Today’s topic: How to create innovative solutions to global women’s rights challenges

Rita asks Lina:

  1. How did you start? What ignited your activism for women’s rights?
  2. What does the world look like for women?
  3. What are the most pressing issues for women right now?
  4. How does the US compare to other countries?
  5. What was the drive behind writing your 1st and 2nd books?
  6. What is this next book about?
  7. What are your plans going forward?
  8. What can other people do to get involved?

About our guest: Lina AbiRafeh is committed to building a better world for women. A global women’s rights expert, author, and speaker with decades of experience, she creates innovative solutions to global women’s rights challenges.

Lina worked for over 20 years as a humanitarian aid worker in contexts such as Afghanistan, Haiti, the Central African Republic, Papua New Guinea, and others. Lina now works independently and advises organizations and companies in enhancing their engagement with women’s rights and gender equality. She serves as the Senior Advisor for Global Women’s Rights at the Arab Institute for Women at the Lebanese American University, where she served as Executive Director for seven years. Lina is also the founder of Yalla, Feminists!, an online space and open platform dedicated to amplifying women’s voices worldwide.

She was honored to be able to share her passion and experience in ending violence against women on global stages, including her TEDx talk, Women Deliver PowerTalk, and keynote address for the Swedish International Development Agency annual meeting, amongst others. Lina completed her doctoral work at the London School of Economics and published “Gender and International Aid in Afghanistan: The Politics and Effects of Intervention” in 2009, based on her Ph.D. research. Her second book, “Freedom on the Frontlines: Afghan Women and the Fallacy of Liberation,” was released in 2022. Her next book outlines fifty years of Arab feminism and will be published in spring 2023.

Lina speaks and frequently publishes on various gender issues, such as the need for a feminist response to the COVID-19 pandemic and its impact on Arab women and girls. She believes women’s leadership is the strongest vehicle for peace and sustainable development. Lina’s piece I Hate International Women’s Day was among many that resonated with women’s rights activists worldwide. Her work in support of women in Afghanistan was featured on CNN, leading to a live CNN interview on this topic. She continues to advocate for women’s rights worldwide, with appearances on France24, CNN Greece, BBC, Good Morning America, and others.

Lina serves on the board of numerous global women’s rights organizations, including SheDecides, Global Institute for Women’s Leadership, Women Deliver Conference 2023, Forced Migration Review, Society of Gender Professionals, Global Women’s Institute, and others. She has received various awards and recognitions, including the Gender Equality Top 100 worldwide in 2018 and 2019 and a Vital Voices fellowship for 2021 for outstanding women leaders. She was recognized by the Women’s Media Center as one of their Progressive Women’s Voices for 2021 and is featured in its database of experts. Lina is also a Women in Power fellow for 2022. Learn more at

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