February 2nd 2011 - Written by: Kelsy

Waking Lions: Challenging Stereotypes and Perceptions in Afghanistan

In 2006 Shannon Galpin, a single mom from Breckenridge, Colorado with no experience in aid work,
sold her home and flew to Kabul, Afghanistan with the goal of empowering the women and children of that region.

“I am tired and I have said ‘Enough’. I am not going to sit on the sidelines and allow atrocities to happen against women.”

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In the five years since, she has made a surprisingly large impact on the ground in Afghanistan with her non-profit Mountain 2 Mountain and sparked controversy in the US about her grassroots approach. In 2010 she became the first woman to cycle across the Panjshir Valley to challenge stereotypes of women and to highlight the region’s beauty. Waking Lions explores what it means to be an aid worker and what it takes to challenge stereotypes and perceptions.

“That’s what I would want to set an example for my own daughter, that she had a mother that stood up for what is right.”

To what lengths would you go to challenge stereotypes and bridge cultures?

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