Times Higher Education: What has most surprised you during your trips to the Asian University for Women in Bangladesh?
Cherie Blair: “I knew Bangladesh as I’d done some legal cases around the country, but what struck me was the buzz from young girls who are so open to wanting to learn. It is very much a melting pot, with young girls from 15 different countries, and that mix of ethnicities and cultures is amazing to see. The biggest group is from Bangladesh, then Afghanistan and then Sri Lanka – from both the Sinhalese and Tamil communities [which had been caught up in an ethnic civil war that lasted for 26 years and ended only in 2009]. The university has worked with them to help them share their feelings about the conflict, and students performed a small play for me about this. Some then went home and ran a series of nursery playgroups about cross-community reconciliation, which was an incredible thing to do.”
Read Cherie Blair’s full interview here: https://www.timeshighereducation.com/people/interview-cherie-blair-asian-university-for-women