The Team

Najaf Mazari

Chairman & Founder of AusGhan Aid 

Najaf Mazari established AusGhan Aid as a way to support his community and hometown of Char Kent in North Afghanistan. Having endured war, poverty and many hardships he was determined to give back in any way he could. 

To kickstart AusGhan Aid, he vowed to donate all the royalties of his successful autobiography, The Rug Maker of Mazar-e-Sharif. 

Salima Mazari

Salima Mazari was the District Governor of the Charkent District in Balkh province in Afghanistan up until the Taliban takeover. Salima was one of three incredibly brave women who ran districts in Afghanistan. 

Over the past 3 years, Salima helped AusGhan Aid greatly through various projects we launched and ran in Afghanistan. She connected us to the right people, gave us sound resources and advice and ensured that our work and mission was carried out in Afghanistan. 

Salima escaped the Taliban during the takeover and now resides in the USA where she works tirelessly to raise funds for emergency relief in Afghanistan. 

Today, she has joined AusGhan Aid as an offical member with the aim to raise fund from the USA.

Maria Mazari

Maria Mazari is Najaf's daughter. Maria is an active member of AusGhan Aid who specialises in all technical matters of the organisation. She is incredibly passionate about her heritage and homeland of Afghanistan.

Maria is in her final year of University where she is a studying a Bachelor of Textile Design, minoring in Fashion Enterprise. She works alongside her father at their family business, Najaf Rugs & Textiles where she manages the daily operations of the business.


Peter Julian


 Peter is a retired high school teacher and currently the treasurer of AusGhan Aid. His greatest priority is to ensure that the every donated cents gets to the people who need it most. 

Interestingly, Peter's parents and his family were instrumental in bringing Cambodian refugees to Australia in the 1980s, he remains friends with these people, 40 years later. 

In his school life, he has also been passionate about forwarding First Nations agenda. 

Peter is also pretty cool. (Maria says so)

Dan Cudmore


Dan has been involved with AusGhan Aid for more than 12 years and has held the role of Secretary for the past six years.

He brings a diverse array of life experiences to the organisation. Those that are relevant to AusGhan Aid include: a planning mentality, an eye for detail (helpful when dealing with large organisations and Government departments), reliability (he can usually can be relied upon when asked to do something), staying power.

Aspects of Dan’s character totally irrelevant to AusGhan Aid include: he runs a lot, he has salt water in his veins, he’s a terrible dancer, has been known to jump out of a perfectly good aeroplane, loves camping out and drinks way too much red wine.


Catherine Lewis

Catherine Lewis lectured at Monash University for 20 years before heading up Insight Publications, a Melbourne-based educational publishing company of Secondary English resources.

In 2010, she founded Wild Dingo Press to publish fiction and non-fiction literary works that explore social, cultural, political and environmentally significant issues.

Cathi took a punt and published Najaf's wildly successful autobiography, The Rug Maker of Mazar-e-Sharif and this launched Wild Dingo Press. 

Cathi loves hosting dinner parties in her home and often houses International guests.

Lin Windram

Lin is the co-founder and director of Brava, a lingerie company. The business was started in 2006 by Lin and her daughter due to the lack of suitable product and expertise for a range of sizes and needs. There are now six stores around Australia.

The business employs many women and the head office includes two sets of mothers and daughters and two sets of sisters, as well as Lin’s grandson on website SEO and granddaughter working in the warehouse.

Since Lin emigrated from the UK she has worked with a political party and a professional association.  

She is passionate about refugee rights and the empowerment of women, Lin is an active member of AusGhan Aid and is a quiet source of wisdom.


Nicky Chung

Event Coordinator 

Nicky has a rich cultural background, being the Australian daughter of Vietnamese refugees. She's very computer savvy and incredibly organised and that's why she's event coordinator for AusGhan Aid. 

 She currently works for Watersure, Victorian Desalination.