Mission: To amplify girls' voices and ensure that every girl has access to twelve years of free, safe, quality education.
About the Organization: The Malala Fund was founded by Malala Yousafzai and her father, Ziauddin, in 2013, after the teenage activist was shot and almost killed by members of the Pakistani Taliban for advocating for girls' right to an education. Malala and her father had been speaking out against the Taliban since 2009, when the group shut down a school Ziauddin ran in the Swat District of Pakistan and forcibly prevented many girls in the area from attending any kind of school. Malala wrote a blog about the threats, was featured in a short 2009 documentary, and was awarded Pakistan's first National Youth Peace Prize in 2011. The Taliban's attack on Malala in 2012 led to worldwide condemnation and protests across Pakistan, where the National Assembly swiftly ratified the country's first Right to Free and Compulsory Education Bill. Awarded the 2014 Nobel Peace Prize along with Indian children's rights activist Kailash Satyarthi, Malala is now a global advocate for girls' education.
A project of the New Venture Fund, the Malala Fund aims to bring awareness to the social and economic impact of girls' education and to empower girls to raise their voices, unlock their own potential, and demand change. The fund's grantmaking program supports efforts to provide quality education for girls whose fundamental right to education is denied because they have to work, are forced to marry early, lack access to school facilities, and/or are given the responsibility of caring for younger siblings.
Current Programs: The Malala Fund currently runs programs focused on girls in Pakistan, Kenya, Nigeria, and Sierra Leone, as well as in Syrian refugee camps. In Pakistan, the fund has helped provide free quality education to former domestic laborers; educational programming and psycho-social support at an internally displaced people's camp; and school supplies and repairs to damaged classrooms. In Kenya, the fund enables girls from Nairobi slums to receive training in information and communication technology and life skills, and supports the Free the Children's Oleleshwa All-Girls Secondary School. The fund's efforts in Nigeria include providing schoolgirls who were kidnapped by Boko Haram and escaped with counseling services and full scholarships to secondary school, as well as supporting community "learning clubs" and scholarships to cover secondary school-related expenses.
In the wake of the Ebola outbreak in West Africa, the Malala Fund supports BRAC's Empowerment and Livelihood for Adolescents program in Sierra Leone, which provides girls affected by the outbreak, including survivors of the disease, with radio-based education programs in informal settings. In its work to address the educational needs of Syrian girls displaced by the ongoing conflict in that country, the fund supports information technology courses and other educational programs in two refugee camps in Jordan, and in 2015 opened a girls' secondary school for refugees in Lebanon.
Website: Visitors to the Malala Fund website can learn about the importance of providing twelve years of education for girls, explore the fund's advocacy work, download fact sheets about what works in girls' education, and/or keep up with fund-related developments on its blog. Visitors also can learn how to get involved in the girls education cause through a social media campaign, a digital art project, or various petitions; host a screening of He Named Me Malala, a documentary film by Davis Guggenheim (2015); launch a fundraiser; and/or make a donation to the fund. A student toolkit and other educator resources also are available for download.
Funding: The Malala Fund is funded by foundations, corporations, and individuals.