Ideas Are Bulletproof
A Powerful Symbol Of The Right To Education
Malala Yousafzai, the Pakistani student who was shot in the head by the Taliban after speaking out for education rights for children, spoke to the U.N. Youth Assembly on her 16th birthday.
On Friday Malala made the following inspiring speech to the Secretary-General of the United Nations and all the assembled world leaders, asking for compulsory free schooling for all children. This is what all parents around the world want for their children.
“I cannot believe how much love people have shown me. I have received thousands of good wish cards and gifts from all over the world. Thank you to all of them. Thank you to the children whose innocent words encouraged me. Thank you to my elders whose prayers strengthened me.”
“Malala day is not my day. Today is the day of every woman, every boy and every girl who have raised their voice for their rights. There are hundreds of human rights activists and social workers who are not only speaking for human rights, but who are struggling to achieve their goals of education, peace and equality. Thousands of people have been killed by the terrorists and millions have been injured. I am just one of them.”
“The terrorists thought they would change my aims and stop my ambitions, but nothing changed in my life except this: weakness, fear, and hopelessness died – strength, courage and power was born. The extremists were and are afraid of books and pens. The power of education frightens them. They are afraid of women. The power of the voice of women frightens them.”
“Dear fellows, today I am focusing on women’s rights and girls’ education because they are suffering the most. There was a time when women social activists asked men to stand up for their rights. But, this time, we will do it by ourselves. I am not telling men to step away from speaking for women’s rights rather I am focusing on women to be independent to fight for themselves.”
“Dear brothers and sisters, we want schools and education for every child’s bright future. We will continue our journey to our destination of peace and education for everyone. No one can stop us. We will speak for our rights and we will bring change through our voice. We must believe in the power and the strength of our words. Our words can change the world.”
“One child, one teacher, one pen and one book can change the world. Education is the only solution. Education First.” ~ Malala at the United Nations Youth Assembly, July 12, 2013
Achieving Education For All
In 2000, governments and the UN adopted the Millennium Development Goals, eight goals to tackle some of the world’s biggest issues, including ensuring all children get a quality education. To increase progress toward this goal, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon launched the Global Education First Initiative last September.
September 2012, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon launched the Global Education First Initiative. Jenni Lee, a senior communications officer at the United Nations Foundation, interviewed Gregory Dubois, the UN Global Education Officer, who explained the purpose of the initiative is to build stronger momentum for the achievement of the international education target by 2015. There are three priority areas: 1) to put every child in school; 2) to improve the quality of learning; and 3) to foster global citizenship.
Thanks to my friend, Bill, for sending me the link to sign up for Malala’s petition. Emailed it to all my family, and now posting it for all of you: This amazing 15-year-old headed to the UN to ask world leaders to get every single child in school. We’re trying to get 1 million signatures to help her — sign up? — The World In Action: Every Child In School Petition
Bubbles of Love Day
Like Malala I cannot believe how much love and support people have shown me. Many countries are struggling with divorce conflict and I have received good wishes from all over the world. There’s a truck driver in Abbotsford who says he was divorced 40 years ago. His children come over to visit every Christmas, he always invites his ex-wife, but she begs off. He says he cannot even remember what the conflict was about. Like Malala Day, Bubbles of Love Day is a bulletproof idea that harnesses the power of words and education.