Right in the middle of Women’s History Month, we have a beautiful new inspiration — a young feminist has started a new chapter of her life. People around the world should be clapping as the fifteen-year-old Pakistani education activist and BBC blogger, Malala Yousafzai, attended her first day of school at Edgbaston High School in Birmingham, England. In good spirits, and offering a half smile for the press, Malala is living her dream of continuing her education.
Last October the world was introduced to Yousafzai after an assassination attempt was made on her life by the Taliban in the Swat Valley of Pakistan. Malala has overcome a plethora of obstacles unfathomable to us in the developing world. This young equal education activist wrote about her experiences of living in Pakistan while under the rule of the Taliban. Her BBC Blog first appeared on January 2009 and had regular posts for over three years before its final post was made in March, 2012.
Following in her father’s footsteps of education activisms, Yousafzai used her blog to voice her concerns and questioned the Taliban for the closure of the girls’ schools throughout her region. Therefore, Malala became a Taliban target. On October 9th, 2012 Yousafzai and two of her female classmates were shot while in route home from school. It is said that a masked man entered their van and asked, “Which one of you is Malala?” And then, the man opened fire. Yousafzai was hit by one bullet that caused multiple wounds as it traveled through her head, neck and shoulder. After months of intensive treatments at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham, Yousafzai was released from the hospital on January 3rd of this year.
Malala Yousafzai is someone to watch. Her future is filled with opportunities as she embraces life in a developed and war free country, continues her education and persues her political dreams. Yousafzai is a young human rights activist rising out of the dust of a war to speak out for equal education for girls in developing nations. In 2011 she won Pakistan’s National Youth Peace Prize. Last month she received multiple nominations for the 2013 Nobel Peace Prize. I have a feeling we will be seeing and hearing more from Malala Yousafzai in the future. I see her fighting for equal education for many years to come.
This week, as she went back to school, she told the press, “I want all girls in the world to have this basic opportunity.”
Leah Sipress is a happily married stay at home Mom to two high energy little characters ages 2 and 4. She first started her blog to keep a digital scrapbook of her family’s activities for relatives out of state and has since found a passion through writing. As a recent University of Washington Tacoma graduate with a BA in Urban Studies, and a community volunteer, she spends her time with her family enjoying the great outdoors.