This remarkable initiative was founded by a young girl at the age of 13 (Sister Zeph), who, regrettably, had to confront gender discrimination within her own family. Facing an attempt on her life at the tender age of three, perpetrated by her uncles and aunts due to her gender, she later encountered discrimination and physical violence in her school. Consequently, she made the courageous decision to withdraw from conventional schooling and, in 1997, established her own educational institution.
This educational institution was founded within the confines of her home’s courtyard. Not only did she educate herself, achieving two Master’s degrees as an independent learner, but she also dedicated fourteen years of her life to imparting knowledge to numerous other girls in the same courtyard.
At the age of 15, she embarked on full-time employment to sustain her educational mission. Her school has remained steadfast in its commitment to providing free education from its inception, and she single-handedly supported this endeavor for fourteen years. Simultaneously, she undertook the responsibilities of teaching at the school, furthering her own education, and maintaining her job.
In 2014, she ventured into the realm of social media, subsequently earning global recognition and accolades for her teaching and writing efforts. The prize money she received was judiciously allocated towards the construction of a modest school building. November 2023 Sister Zeph won the Global Teacher Prize From the Varkey Foundation in partnership with Dubai Cares and UNESCO in recognition of her sustained efforts to empower and educate thousands of women and children over the past 26 years.
Today, the Zeph Center boasts an enrollment of over 206 students, all of whom receive a comprehensive ten-year education, completely free of charge. As well as a women’s vocational center with over 200 women a year learning different skills for employment and more. With a curriculum encompassing a diverse array of subjects and skills, including sewing, party and bridal makeup, hairdressing, self-defense techniques, science, drawing, acting, playwriting, IT education, English language proficiency, health education, finance management, blogging, career counseling, national testing services, and peace-building.
Moreover, the school’s teaching staff consists of 12 dedicated educators, with an additional 10 volunteer teachers instructing the girls remotely on a wide range of subjects, hailing from Europe, the USA, and India.
Sister Zeph, Founder and Chair person
Malee Octavia, Co Chair
Nazish Yaqoob, financial secretary
Tayyaba Siddique, Principal
Other Team Members
Aneeza Mick Polus HR manager
Saira Abid Field officer
Rakhil Arif Board member
Aqsa Khokhar Board member
Irfan Bhatti board member
Nazish Salman Board member
Inza Rashid Finance manager
Rawish Yaqoob Logistic officer
Nawab bb board member
Nawab bb Board member
Rahat Khan Board member