Stories of courage, resilience and survival: Esmatullah Noori

When Esmatullah Noori's mother rang him at work one night to tell him the Taliban had come looking for him he knew he couldn't return home. If he did they would kill him.

The next day he packed a bag with clothes borrowed from a friend and took a bus from Kabul, south to Khandahar. From there he paid $200 to a taxi driver to take him across the border into Pakistan, beginning a four year journey to Australia via detention in Indonesia, an experience that nearly killed him.

Esmat's story is the first in a series of four conversations in 2020 on the theme: Stories of Courage Resilience and Survival.

Esmat will be talking with PhilVoysey on Sunday, March 22 at the Katoomba Cultural Centre at 2pm.

 Esmatullah Noori

Esmatullah Noori

"Esmat's story is certainly sad and confronting. But it's an amazing story of survival," said Voysey.

"People's stories of overcoming incredible adversity are inspiring. They tell us a lot about the power of the human spirit. We have the capacity within us to overcome almost anything.

"The four speakers I've chosen for this series have all had to overcome very different forms of adversity: displacement, life threatening illness, physical disability, paralysing grief from the loss of a loved one in dramatic circumstances. They all have inspiring stories to tell."

To book to hear Esmat go to and follow the Eventbrite link on the homepage.

For more information contact Phil Voysey on 0457999987 or send an email to