Happy Malala Day!
July 12th is a special day in the world. It’s the birthday for girls’ education advocate Malala Yousafzai, also known as Malala Day! If you don’t know the story of Malala, it’s an inspiring one. The now-20-year-old was born in a small town in Pakistan. Her father, Ziauddin, ran a school near their home in Swat and is an advocate for education. This was difficult because Pakistan has the second highest number of children not attending school in the world. Ziauddin was an opponent of the Taliban for his views on education.
Malala followed in her father’s footsteps and became an advocate for girls’ education in Pakistan, even though her family received death threats and her father’s school had to be closed. Malala’s popularity grew as she was nominated by Archbishop Desmond Tutu for the International Children’s Peace Prize. However, as her popularity grew so did the risk of her life and her family’s life. In October of 2012, Malala and her classmates were attacked by the Taliban. Malala suffered from a gunshot wound through her head.
Malala survived the horrible injury; spending many months in a hospital in the United Kingdom. This life-altering event did not silence Malala, but made her voice, and the voice of others, even stronger!
Malala has dedicated her life to girls’ education by establishing the Malala Fund and the United Nations mark July 12 as Malala Day. Since the “gunshot heard around the world” happened, Malala has written a book and been in a documentary about her life, both called He Named Me Malala. Every year on her birthday, Malala makes a point to do something to further help the 60 million girls who do not receive an education.
How Malala Spends Her Birthday
On her 17th birthday, Malala visited families of schoolgirls kidnapped by Boko Haram and told Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan to do more to bring them home. On her 18th birthday, she opened a school for adolescent Syrian girls in Lebanon who fled their homes to escape war and violence. On her 19th birthday, Malala visited Dadaab, the world’s largest refugee camp.
This year Malala is on her #GirlPowerTrip around the world! Before Malala heads off to college later this year, Malala is determined to spend as much time as possible meeting with girls in North America, Latin America, the Middle East, Europe and Africa to help them fight for their futures.
Malala kicked off her inspirational trip back in April 2017 in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, also known as “America’s Refugee Capital,” where she meet with students and local leaders. Since then, Malala has travel to Ottawa, Canada to address Canadian Parliament. Malala praised Canada for its welcoming of refugees and spoke of the transformative power of girls’ education. Malala also chatted with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau! And today Malala is in Iraq to meet some of the many girls who are not receiving an education, and share a similar story to Malala.
Find out more about how Malala is spending her birthday over at her blog! Today, Malala is standing with girls in Iraq. You can stand with her — and give hope to girls still fighting.
To help celebrate Malala Day use your voice to spread Malala’s message that every one deserves a right to an education. Follow her Girl Power Trip on Medium, Twitter, Facebook and Instagram and share the girls’ stories you read with your friends and family.
More Articles on Malala on our Blog:
- 5 Ways Malala Has Impacted the World
- Malala Talks About Her Documentary
- Malala Wins Nobel Peace Prize!
- Emma Watson Interviews Malala Yousafzai
- He Named Me Malala Documentary Premiere
- Malala & Her Father Support Fathers Around the World
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