Ms. Marnie Gustavson is the Executive Director of PARSA, an international Non-profit based in Kabul, Afghanistan, where she resided for five years of her childhood. Marnie creates new approaches to social problems using humanity’s creativity, resilience, and ability. Understanding the importance of community partnership, three groundbreaking programs highlight the mission of PARSA. With the Ministry of Education, PARSA has helped rebirth the 70-year old Afghan Scouts program. With the Ministry of Social Affairs, PARSA has the Healthy Afghan Child Program and is working to initiate change in the Afghan National orphanage system so to insure the most vulnerable children in Afghanistan can have care in the post conflict country. And PARSA has been funded by War Child Holland to implement a “psychosocial training center” that will help children who are not succeeding in school with special education, and therapy. This program is being prepared for national replication. She has also worked as a consultant and trainer for women leaders, Afghan women parliamentarians and NGO directors providing comprehensive organizational development, and a unique program of personal and professional support in this post conflict country. Working with her husband, Dr. Norman Gustavson, psychologist and medical anthropologist and Dr. Patricia Omidian, anthropologist she is co-creating psychosocial services adapted to the Afghan culture. With her training partner, Afghan American Mahbouba Seraj she designed “women’s listening groups” and developed a radio program that Mahbouba hosts called “Our Beloved Afghanistan” focusing on programs that will support Afghan women as they attempt to improve the quality of their lives and to claim their human rights. She is also currently a consultant with American University of Afghanistan, developing curriculum and training teachers for the Goldman Sachs “10,000 Women Program for Afghan women entrepreneurs.
In her work she creates new approaches to social problems using humanity’s creativity, resilience, and ability. Her international work focuses on developing leaders who have an appreciation for human interconnectedness, and an interest in developing sustainable systems that promote all people having access to equality and economic opportunities.
Download Marnie’s full CV here: Marnie Gustavson CV