During a time of desperation, Sidiqi started a dressmaking business that she ran in secret out of her home. With the help of her four sisters, she was able to offer sewing training and work opportunities to 100 women in her neighborhood. Through fierce courage and sheer brilliance, Sidiqi was able to weave hope and thread the possibilities for a brighter future.
New York Times best-selling author Gayle Tzemach Lemmon regales readers with Sidiqi’s remarkable story in her book, “The Dressmaker of Khair Khana,” which was the summer reading requirement for first-year students at Berry College.
Lemmon will speak today at Berry at 7 p.m. at the Cage Center as part of the Conson Wilson Lecture Series. This event is free and open to the public.
Lemmon stumbled upon Sidiqi’s story while she was in Afghanistan working on a case study for her master’s degree at Harvard University. While she was studying female entrepreneurs in conflict areas, a contact referred her to Sidiqi, who is now a spokeswoman with Merci Corp., helping women establish businesses in conflict and post-conflict areas throughout the world.
First-year students received a copy of “The Dressmaker of Khair Khana” and discussed the issues raised in the narrative with one another, first-year mentors and their academic advisors.
Lemmon is also the deputy director of the Council on Foreign Relations’ Women and Foreign Policy program. Prior to joining the Council, Lemmon covered public policy and emerging mar-
kets for the global investment firm PIMCO, after working for nearly a decade as a journalist with the ABC News Political Unit and “This
Week with George Stephanopoulos.”
She has reported on entrepreneurs in conflict and post-conflict regions for the Financial Times, the New York Times, the International Herald Tribune, the Daily Beast and the Christian Science Monitor, along with Ms. Magazine, Bloomberg, Politico and the Huffington Post.