Tonight on International Day Of The Girl, I tucked both my daughter and son to bed with visions of a world where all girls can paint their hopes and dreams in vivid color and light.
There is so much work that needs to be done. Globally there are 124 million children who are not in school and girls are first to be excluded. I recently shared my thoughts on the film “He Named Me Malala” and its power to inspire and engage the activist within everyone to join the film’s movement. It has been a rewarding and enlightening project to participate in the film’s promotion – and a true honor to be granted a phone interview with Malala and other film ambassadors.
Fittingly introduced as “our fearless leader,” listening to Malala’s passion, purpose, and humility radiate through the phone lead me to tears. She spoke of the amazing relationship with her father, teacher and founder of her Pakistani school – and his ability to instill in her that girls should have the right to education, independence, and forward thinking – despite the social climate. “He did not clip my wings,” she said. While Malala’s mother instilled wisdom saying “It is your duty to tell the truth, whatever happens don’t worry, tell the truth.”
Malala continues to use her platform as an education advocate while drawing attention to crucial issues worldwide. She described opening a school for Syrian refugee girls in Lebanon on her 18th birthday as one of the best days of her life and asked leaders to respond by “thinking about their own children.”
Let’s not forget her visits to Nigeria as part of the #BringBackOurGirls campaign and her Nobel Peace Prize win to which she said, “It was not that I won the Nobel Peace Prize – Children won it that year.”
Malala had several message for girls: “It is important for girls to believe in themselves, there is no limit, they can do anything” and “it is important to know your responsibility and believe in yourself.”
On this International Day Of The Girl – join in the movement and stand #WithMalala. See the film, and engage in the conversation #WithMalala #HeNamedMeMalala. Utilize this helpful parent discussion guide to talk about the film with kids.
I was not compensated for this post. Second and third images via Fox Searchlight.