Established in 2012, Arfa Karim Foundation aims to promote and develop free I.T educational trend in the youth with the indigenous environment, in Pakistan. In order to give life to the dream’s of Arfa Karim, after her death, Arfa Karim Foundation was established by her parents.
Arfa Karim Foundation aspire to be an agent of positive change towards the achievement of modernization paradigm and to set tradition of excellence through creating an enabling educational and professional environment in which youth, irrespective of their social status and economic condition, pursuer quality education at par with International standards.
Some of our objective are:
- Development and promotion of E-learning at all levels.
- Establishment of Computer Labs in underprivileged schools.
- Establishment of Center of Excellence (Smart School) for gifted students.
- Uplifting of needy and talented students.
- Establishment of state of the art and high-tech DigiCon Valley.
Our organization is backed by enthusiastic volunteers and educationalists who are working hard to turn the dreams of Arfa Karim into Reality.
Initiating a task is not always a piece of cake especially when it has to be done on a mass level. Man encounters several hurdles and challenges in the first few steps but that difficult phase is regarded as the emblem of the whole journey as this is the very segment that shapes the future course because the iron is hot and can be molded easily.
Arfa Karim Foundation is passing through the same stage whose sole aim is to transform Arfa’s enthusiasm into such a cloud which could pour the blissful raindrops over the underserved, to make them literate, groomed and nurtured citizens of the country. Arfa was not only my daughter but belonged to all of us.
So it is our combined duty to carry forward her ambitions and to make sure that every plant that she sowed turn into a fruitful tree. I, as chairperson of Arfa Karim Foundation remain hopeful of all of you to walk side by side with me sothat our caravan could reach its goal successfully. May Allah bless you all.
Arfa Karim Randhawa (2 February 1995 – 14 January 2012) was a Pakistani student and computer prodigy who in 2004 at the age of nine years became the youngest Microsoft Certified Professional (MCP). She kept the title until 2008. She also received the President’s Award for Pride of Performance. A science park in Lahore, the Arfa Software Technology Park, was named after her. She was invited by Bill Gates to visit the Microsoft Headquarters in the USA.
On 2 August 2005, Arfa was presented the Fatimah Jinnah Gold Medal in the field of Science and Technology by the then Prime Minister of Pakistan Shaukat Aziz on the occasion of 113th birth anniversary of Fatima Jinnah. She also received the Salaam Pakistan Youth Award again in August 2005 from the President of Pakistan. Arfa is also the recipient of the President’s Award for Pride of Performance, a civil award usually granted to people who have shown excellence in their respective fields over a long period of time. She is the youngest recipient of this award. Arfa was made brand ambassador for Pakistan Telecommunication Company’s 3G Wireless Broadband service named EVO in January 2010.
Arfa represented Pakistan on various international forums, and was invited by the Pakistan Information Technology Professionals Forum for a stay of two weeks in Dubai. A dinner reception was hosted for her there, which was attended by the dignitaries of Dubai including the Ambassador of Pakistan. During that trip, Arfa was presented with various awards and gifts including a laptop. In November 2006, Arfa attended the Tech-Ed Developers conference themed Get ahead of the game held in Barcelona on an invitation from Microsoft. She was the only Pakistani among over 5000 developers in that conference.
In 2011, at the age of 16, Arfa was studying at the Lahore Grammar School Paragon Campus in her second year of A-levels. On 22 December 2011 she suffered a cardiac arrest after an epileptic seizure that damaged her brain, and was admitted to Lahore’s Combined Military Hospital (CMH) in critical condition.
On 9 January 2012, Bill Gates, chairman of Microsoft, contacted Arfa’s parents and directed his doctors to adopt “every kind of measure” for her treatment. Gates set up a special panel of international doctors who remained in contact with her local doctors through teleconference. The panel received details about her illness and provided assistance in diagnosis and treatment. Local doctors dismissed the option of moving Arfa to another hospital owing to her being on a ventilator and in critical condition. Members of Arfa’s family have lauded Bill Gates for offering to bear her treatment expenses.
On 13 January 2012, Arfa started to improve and some parts of her brain showed signs of improvement. Her father, Amjad Abdul Karim Randhawa, said Microsoft had raised the possibility of flying Arfa to the US for care.
She died in hospital at Lahore on 14 January 2012, aged 16.