Malala Day is celebrated on July 12 every year to honor young activist Malala Yousafzai. The day was declared by the United Nations and July 12 was selected because on this day Malala was born in the year 1997. This day aims to support women’s education across the globe. 

The day is observed to appeal the global leaders to ensure that every citizen (especially girls) is getting free and compulsory education.  

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Malala has started advocating for women's education since 2008 and on July 12, 2013, when she was just sixteen years old she delivered an impassioned speech at the United Nations headquarters on the need for gender equality in education. 

Malala’s efforts were not liked by the Taliban and in October 2012, she was attacked by Taliban gunmen and was in critical condition and was later shifted to the United Kingdom and miraculously recovered. 

Despite such an attack, Malala returned to the public arena and continued to raise her voice against gender inequality in education. She has also founded the ‘Malala Funds,’ based out of Birmingham. Malala Funds are a non-profitable organization that helps girls all over the world to go to school. She has also co-authored a book named “I am Malala”, which was an international bestseller. Many documentaries and short films are also made and the documentary “He named me Malala,” which was made in the year 2015 was also shortlisted for the Oscars in the same year.

Apart from a dedicated day, Malala is honored by many awards. In 2012, she was awarded by first National Youth Peace Prize by the Pakistan Government. In 2014, she became the youngest awardee of the Nobel Peace Prize, at the age of 17 years. In 2017, Malala was designated as the United Nations Messenger of Peace by Secretary-General Antonio Guterres. Recently, she has been awarded honorary Canadian Citizenship.

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Malala was born on July 12, 1997, to Ziauddin Yousafzai and Toor Pekai Yousafzi. Her father was a Pakistani teacher and ran his own school. Malala has two siblings Khushal and Atal Yousafzi. After the attack whole, Yousafzi family moved to England and after the recovery, Malala joined Oxford University to study Philosophy, Politics and Economics. 

Quotes by Malala Yousafzai from her book I am Malala: The story of a girl who stood up for Education and was shot by the Taliban:

  • “We realize the importance of our voices only when we are silenced.” 
  • “One child, one teacher, one book, one pen can change the world.”
  • “Education is education. We should learn everything and then choose which path to follow." Education is neither Eastern nor Western, it is human.”
  • “When the whole world is silent, even one voice becomes powerful.”
  • “If one man can destroy everything, why can't one girl change it?”

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