Malala Yousafzai spoke out on July 14, 2016, while visiting a Burundian refugee camp, on behalf of the jailed schoolchildren in Burundi. The children were jailed in May for drawing on photos of Burundian president, Pierre Nkurunziza. The president’s decision to run for another term caused violent protests to occur, thus his response to the children disfiguring his photo.
When Malala, who prefers her first name, spoke with the Associated Press, she said the refugee children should be in school instead of jail because the country’s success lies in acquiring an education for the future.
As an advocate for refugee girls, she survived being shot in 2012 after she spoke out about girls never giving up their education. Malala was a student in Pakistan when she was shot for her views on education for female children.
Thousands of refugee girls yearn to attend school but are unable because of lack of funding and the restrictive cultures they where they live. Malala urged international donors to participate more in educational funding to make this a possibility and she urged the refugee girls to not give up on their goals and to be like her.
Malala is an inspiration for women around the world, to maintain their strength and dignity while achieving what they set their mind to and not what society does. Malala’s courage continues to fight these girls’ cry for help. She has further information on her website.
Written by Andrea Lopez
Edited by Cathy Milne
The New York Times: Nobel Winner Malala Urges Burundi to Release Jailed Students
The Malala Fund: Malala’s Story
Image Courtesy of Southbank Centre’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License