Malala – our inspiring woman of the week

The youngest Nobel laureate at the age of 17, Malala has a made her mark on history.

We’ve been hearing a lot about Malala this week, as she’s just been offered a place at the University of Oxford. But Malala’s tireless work for the rights of girls began long before the world knew her name. As far back as 2009, Malala began blogging to expose how the Taliban’s increasing control over the Swat Valley in Pakistan was hindering girls’ education and she began to recieve death threats against her. On October 9, 2012, a gunman shot Malala when she was traveling home from school. She survived, and has continued to speak out on the importance of education.

Since the attempt on her life, Malala has been an unstoppable advocate for children’s education, specifically the education of girls, as well as gender equality. In 2013, Malala and Ziauddin co-founded the Malala Fund to bring awareness to the social and economic impact of girls’ education and to empower girls to raise their voices, to unlock their potential and to demand change.

“And then, out of that silence came, thousands of voices. The terrorists thought that they would change our aims and stop our ambitions but nothing changed in my life except this: Weakness, fear and hopelessness died. Strength, power and courage was born.”

For her 18th birthday on July 12, 2015, also called Malala Day, the young activist continued to take action on global education by opening a school for Syrian refugee girls in Lebanon. Its expenses covered by the Malala Fund, the school was designed to admit nearly 200 girls from the ages of 14 to 18. “Today on my first day as an adult, on behalf of the world’s children, I demand of leaders we must invest in books instead of bullets,” Yousafzai proclaimed.

No struggle can succeed without women participating side by side with men. There are two powers in the world; one is the sword and the other is the pen. There is a third power stronger than both, that of women.”

Malala understands how education can change the lives of girls and women, giving them with the tools and resources to find jobs and become economically self-sufficient.

Education is the best weapon we have to fight poverty, ignorance and terrorism,”

Through her composure, intelligence and advocacy, Malala has proven that girls demand respect, and they demand human rights. The importance of elevating this perspective was highlighted by the Girl Declaration, which outlines the policy and cultural changes necessary for girls to attain human rights and which Malala signed along with dozens of other important thinkers and advocates from around the globe.

Since 2002, we’ve helped over 600,000 children go to school. With your help, we can reach so many more. Donate today and give a mother living in poverty the opportunity to give her child an education, and the chance of a better future.