Matin Maulawizada

Matin is one of the most sought after fashion and celebrity make-up artists working today. His work has been published on the international and domestic covers and pages of Vogue, Elle, InStyle, Glamour, Cosmopolitan, Marie Claire, and Vanity Fair.

Living legends Jeanne Moreau and Meryl Streep, actresses Angelina Jolie, Claire Danes, Julianne Moore, and Gwyneth Paltrow, pop stars Dido, Mandy Moore, and Jessica Simpson -- all are among his clients.  

Perhaps most importantly, Matin is the founder of Afghan Hands Inc., a nonprofit educational organization dedicated to helping Afghan widows and disenfranchised women.

CNN's Anderson Cooper 360 profiled the Afghan Hands project, and press coverage includes Elle, Life and Style, Vogue Nippon, Lucky and People. The New York flagship store of Saks Fifth Avenue featured the shawls in its windows for "Brush With Greatness" week. Artists, photographers, and designers are working with Matin and Afghan Hands to bring about social change in Afghanistan. The project is a model for change in other countries where women are in desperate need of education and empowerment.

Mikhail "Mike" Serdiouk

"As our beloved project is getting more and more publicity and my name appears as often as we get mentioned, I can't deny the pleasure and satisfaction of having affiliation with a cause that I so passionately believe in and love. However, the one quiet hero that has been the driving force for ALL of Afghan hands, the man who I respect, honor and trust as I do God, has been still quietly working every waking hours to make sure everything runs smoothly. He is Mikhail Serdiouk. 

To an outsider, we might appear like a "company". The fact is that I only do the creative part and go back and forth to Afghanistan. It is Mike that learnt with unmatched dedication the how to's of filing papers for a non-profit, programming a shopping cart for the website, spending every day after work, and I mean EVERY DAY OF THE WEEK, updating the inventory, coming up with a system for inventory, shipping, customer service and everything else that would be normally done by a staff of at least 10. And he has done all this tirelessly as a volunteer for the past 8 years. 

In life we are lucky to get a partner, a friend or a mentor that teach us integrity not by talking but by acting responsible and respectful. Mike has simply done this for as long as I have known him. His integrity and honesty has thought me more than I can ever repay or return the favor. I was touched a couple of weeks ago when we wanted to buy a couple of cheap but much needed mirrors for the office from a hardware store. We didn't have the tax exemption paper on us. The mirrors cost was only $40.00 and I was about to buy it and pay $3.20 tax on it. He wouldn't have it. He simply said : "what can $3.20 buy in Afghanistan?" This just hit me like a dagger and made me realize how much he really cares for what we do in Afghanistan. 

I just want to publicly thank him and share his tireless, selfless love for Afghan Hands, and the women in the project. And his unconditional support of me with my head in the clouds. He is the grounding and anchoring force that makes Afghan Hands a reality. 

As Afghan Hands will be mentioned more and more and he works tirelessly on making the project a success, I want you, my friends, to know that without this man, hidden humbly behind the scenes, none of what is today Afghan Hands would have been materialized."

- Matin