Nobel Peace Prize laureate Malala Yousafzai dedicated her award to the “voiceless children” of the world and continues the fight for an education for every child. She and Kailash Satyarthi were named joint winners and will split the $1.1 million award.
Yousafzai received the award from the Norwegian Nobel Committee, at Oslo City Hall, in Oslo, Norway, and the audience included family members, dignitaries, royals and celebrities.
At 17, Malala is the first Pakistani and youngest recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize but stated that the prize is not for her.
It is for those forgotten children who want education. It is for those frightened children who want peace. It is for those voiceless children who want change.
The young advocate of education for women said people describe her in different ways. Malala said some refer to her as the girl who was shot by the Taliban while others describe her as the girl who continues to fight for her rights.
Two years ago, Yousafzai was shot in the head by the Taliban for speaking out on education. She began advocating for girls’ rights to education in her homeland when she was an 11-year-old.
I had two options. One was to remain silent and wait to be killed. And the second was to speak up and then be killed. I chose the second one. I decided to speak up.
Chairman of the Nobel Committee Thorbjorn Jagland stated his impressions of Malala Yousafzai to ceremony guests.
Her courage is almost indescribable.
Yousafzai describes herself as a young woman who fights for world peace and education but also continues to fight with her siblings, two younger brothers.
Malala also refers to herself as nothing special, but as a girl who wanted to learn above all else.
As far as I know, I am just a committed and even stubborn person who wants to see every child getting quality education, who wants to see women having equal rights and who wants peace in every corner of the world. Education is one of the blessings of life, and one of its necessities.
Winning the Nobel prize is not the first honor Malala has received. She has visited President Barack Obama, Queen Elizabeth II and has also addressed the United Nations.
Yousafzai now studies at a high school for girls in Birmingham, England and five other teen girls were guests at the Nobel Peace Prize ceremony.
Though I appear as one girl, one person who is 5 foot 2 inches tall – if you include my high heels – I am not a lone voice. I am many.
She she will use her prize money to build schools in Pakistan.
[Image Credit: AP/Via Miami Herald]