Samra Zafar

Samra Zafar

The author is a multiple award winning, top graduate of the University of Toronto, a Public Speaker on women's rights, a mother, and a social entrepreneur. Samra is a financial services professional and serves as a Governor for the University of Toronto. Follow her at: www.samrazafar.com and www.facebook.com/samrazafar001/. She tweets @iamsamrazafar (twitter.com/iamsamrazafar)

I was 16 when I was forced to marry a stranger and move to Canada

When I was a kid, my only goal was to get a good education. I dreamt of attending Harvard or Stanford, and planned to become a doctor one day. I was the eldest of four daughters in a Pakistani Muslim family. We lived in Ruwais, a small town in the United Arab Emirates, where my father worked in an oil plant and my mother was a teacher. At school, I always stood out among the girls in my class—I was brash, clever, outspoken. I took pride in acing every test. When I brought home top marks, my father would ...

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