Tag Archives: #malaladay

Opinion: Raise your hand on Malala Day

Just under a year ago, I wrote a piece about the shooting of a girl who dared to demand her right an education. Today, that girl will address the UN and meet Ban Ki Moon to discuss access to education worldwide. Today is Malala Yousafzai’s 16th birthday.

Education is a right that we often take for granted in the UK. But millions of children worldwide miss out on an education. Where parents cannot afford to send their children to school, cannot afford for their children not to work, or even when places are provided but they cannot provide the uniform or materials, those children will never have the opportunity to change their lives. They will live and die in poverty.

Girls are more likely to miss out on education than boys. When finances are tight, many families will choose to educate sons but not daughters; sons will go on to work, but if daughters are expected to raise a family and stay at home then educating them is seen as pointless. Often, raising children is something done at school age– in sub-Saharan Africa, 1 in 5 girls is married before the age of 18. Once they are married, they will not return to school as this video shows.

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