Why we chose Anna as a Fellow
Anna was studying conflict and storytelling in Afghanistan in 2007, after visiting her father there, a development expert with the UNDP. With media blossoming after the fall of the Taliban, Anna realized that amidst all the emerging dreck there was an opportunity to use entertainment media to inspire people to start businesses. She is now fielding requests from all over the world to repeat her Afghan success.
The most potent job creator in settings of widespread poverty is the establishment of successful small and medium businesses. Anna saw an opportunity to tap existing resilience and enterprise by showcasing successful entrepreneurs and the step-by-step process of how to launch a business. Bamyan Media created Dream and Achieve, a show loosely based on the "American Idol" model of audience participation. The show was a hit, and while conditions in Afghanistan did not permit accurate assessment of impact, Bamyan has created a new model that connects would-be entrepreneurs to the technical assistance they need to succeed.