On 23 January, Fotovat will engage with members of government and civil society in Dhaka to discuss women, peace, and security issues in Bangladesh and the region, according to the office of the Spokesperson at the US Department of State.

She will participate in an inauguration event for the Reducing Child Marriage – Skills Training for Advancing Resources project, a partnership between the US Embassy and the Bangladesh Rural Advancement Committee (BRAC).

This programme will provide vocational training for 14-18-year-old girls and young women – especially those most at risk of a child, early, and forced marriage – from the most climate-vulnerable localities.

Since 2017, the Secretary’s Office of Global Women’s Issues (S/GWI) has supported scholarships for young women from conflict zones in Asia and the Middle East to attend university at AUW.

With S/GWI support, AUW aims to produce the next generation of women leaders for Asia and the Middle East by providing a high-quality education to women of great potential who would otherwise have few opportunities. Programming includes opportunities for training in leadership, human rights, and organisational and financial management, as well as practical internship experiences.

Recently, through the Gender Equity and Equality Action Fund (GEEA) Fund, S/GWI and the Department of State’s Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor have provided additional resources for an AUW scholarship programme for 104 young Afghan women who otherwise would not be able to pursue higher education due to the Taliban’s edicts closing secondary schools and universities to women.

In support of the recently launched US Strategy on Global Women’s Economic Security, the GEEA fund, managed by the US Agency for International Development’s (USAID) Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment Hub and implemented by USAID and the Department of State, advances economic security for women and girls by increasing their access to resources, services, and leadership opportunities and by addressing the barriers that limit their ability to participate fully in the economy.

Fotovat leads a team of gender experts promoting gender equality efforts including support of women, peace, and security, countering violent extremism, promoting women’s economic empowerment, and combating gender-based violence.

She has over 20 years of experience advocating gender and human rights globally, specifically in conflict and post-conflict settings.