Sara Stanizai

Offering Afghan diaspora women a road back to our culture.

Supporting diaspora mental health through professional coaching, speaking and consulting.

Salaam, I’m Sara.

I believe that you can be Afghan and be yourself.

My dad is from Logar; my mom was from Kandahar. I was born and raised in Los Angeles, CA.

I grew up with loving parents and a close family. However, they didn’t know how to support my identity development as a queer, first-gen, eldest daughter.

They were doing their best, but didn’t use words like anxiety, depression, microaggression, or trauma.

At home, I was the dutiful daughter, but I spoke a cultural language that was foreign to my family.

Out in the world, I tried my best to fit in among my peers. No one had heard of Afghanistan. Sadly, I wanted to keep it that way.

But as the world turned its attention to us (and not in a good way) in the early 2000s, I felt a spotlight on me.

Overnight, I was expected to be a spokesperson for my entire community. A community that I had turned my back on, and that I felt had turned its back on me.

I felt like an imposter in every setting I was in.

It wasn’t until I fought to define my full identity for myself - embracing my heritage, my queerness, my faith, and my family - that I truly felt at home.

This is the lesson that I want to gift to all my diaspora sisters, and for the rest of the world to hear:

We get to define ourselves, and we’re doing it every day.

AS SEEN ON...

Programs & Offerings

Afghan-American Women’s Group

A virtual group for first- & second-generation Afghans in diaspora seeking community and healing.

Afghan Women's Retreat

An in-person, joyful healing retreat for Afghan diaspora women in the mountains of California.

Business Coaching

Get expert, private guidance to shift your mindset and create the business of your dreams.

Leadership Retreat

Join us for five sunny days & six magical nights in a luxury beachside villa to upgrade your leadership.

Speaking and Workshops for Your Organization

Sara is a sought-after speaker and facilitator for events and organizations nationwide. She is a coach and licensed therapist who founded Prospect Therapy to create a queer- and trans-affirming practice that focuses specifically on serving first-generation American and immigrant communities. Sara is a dynamic and engaging speaker, and provides workshops to organizations for a range of topics including the Afghan-American experience, mental health for immigrants, reconnecting with your culture as an immigrant, and more.

What People are Saying about Sara

Meymuna headshot

“I admire how she breaks stereotypes and brings us into her intimate world where her participants can show up as their fully integrated selves...”

Since meeting Sara, I’ve been inspired by her authenticity and approach to creating safe spaces for the immigrant community. Although she has a global perspective and helps anyone – her unique focus on Afghan American women has been like no other that I’ve seen. I admire how she breaks stereotypes and brings us into her intimate world where her participants can show up as their fully integrated selves – as an immigrant myself, I understand how compartmentalizing our identities is extremely exhausting. Sara’s approach is a template for many of us to learn from and to implement into the immigrant dialogue.

— Meymuna Hussein-Cattan, Entrepreneur & Nonprofit Founder

Stevon headshot

“Sara is extremely dialed in when it comes to understanding the connection between being an immigrant/first-generation and Impostor Syndrome.”

Sara is extremely dialed in when it comes to understanding the connection between being an immigrant/first-generation and Impostor Syndrome. I think her ability to help people gain insight and implement compassion towards themselves is above average. I’m sure her clients benefit greatly from her direct communication and willingness to call out those beliefs that they have adopted about themselves that were never, or are no longer, applicable.

—Stevon Lewis, LMFT Therapist and Speaker

Farah headshot

“She is a trusted guiding light not only for the Afghan community but the whole collective.”

In watching Sara facilitate her Afghan women’s group and retreat, I witnessed someone who is doing what they were born to do. There is a sense of destiny about her work. She holds compassion and heart to allow a brave space for others to be themselves fully. She’s raw, real and fun! She is a trusted guiding light not only for the Afghan community but the whole collective. She is an alchemist, turning pain into love. I highly recommend her for any type of transformative work.

—Farah Siddiq Healer, Teacher & Tech Founder