Malala Yousafzai, a 15-year old activist for girls’ education in Swat, Pakistan, was shot in the head by the Taliban on October 9 in an assassination attempt. They halted and boarded her bus, demanded that she be identified, and then opened fire, seriously wounding her and two of her fellow students. By a miracle, she was not killed instantly. After initial treatment in Pakistan, she was removed to England for medical treatment.
Malala came to the attention of the world in 2009 when she spoke out to the media against the attacks on girls’ schools in the Swat Valley. She was featured in the video made about the Hoshyar Foundation in 2011. [link to video]
Since then she has become an inspiration for girls the world over. United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon declared November 10, 2012, as Malala Day and celebrations were held in over 100 countries, including Pakistan. Thousands have signed a petition calling for her to be awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.
Shortly after the attack, Hoshyar’s executive director, Carla Petievich, announced a new fund to honor Malala. “Every time the Taliban try to foil girls’ aspirations for education, we must recommit to getting more girls in school and keeping them there,” she stated in a challenge to Hoshyar’s friends and followers.
It takes $30,000 to build a new school in Pakistan. Within the first month, over $11,000 was contributed to Hoshyar for this purpose. The campaign will continue until the target is met. Then an appropriate site will be selected and a school for girls will be built to honor Malala.