“As we celebrate Malala Day on July 14, I have both hope and heartbreak. I thought we had hit a turning point in our history, that never again would a girl face what I had to face.”
Malala Yousafzai recently wrote these words in anticipation of the day set aside to commemorate her determined battle for girls’ education. Two years ago, the Taliban shot Malala in the head as she returned home from school in her northwest Pakistan village. She was 15 years old.
Since then, Malala has pursued her own education while speaking out on behalf of girls’ education around the world. “I know education is what separates a girl who is trapped in a cycle of poverty, fear and violence from one with a chance at a better future,” she wrote.
She’s right. Education is the first step in preventing child marriage, reducing maternal and infant mortality, and promoting female empowerment.
“My birthday wish this year is that we all raise our voices for those under oppression, to show our power and to demonstrate that our courage is stronger than their campaign of fear,” she wrote.
Join Central Asia Institute in wishing Malala a happy 17th birthday. You can also support Malala and her #StrongerThan campaign. It’s time to raise our voices to stop international oppression of girls. Learn more about her #StrongerThan campaign: http://www.globaleducationfirst.org/malaladay.html.