Hadiqa Bashir Wins Muhammad Ali Humanitarian Award

HadiqaBashir: A Savior in Swat

Hadiqa Bashir is a teenager with a mission in life, i.e. to uplift the socio-economic conditions of females in rural areas of Pakistan with a specific focus on gender discrimination, domestic violence and to bring an end to forced early marriages of young girls, especially those which take place to settle disagreements over land.

She began her crusade after seeing what happened to a friend who was married off when they were just in grade six. Visiting households in her town, she spreads awareness about the disadvantages of child marriages with the hope that she can ensure that young girls have a proper childhood and are able to pursue their studies. This led to the formation of her group Girls United for Human Rights and to date she has been successful in stopping many such marriages. She ofcourse has the support of her family as well as prominent members of the community.

Muhammad Ali Humanitarian Award

The Muhammad Ali Humanitarian Award (which epitomizes legendary boxer Muhammad Ali’s humanitarian endeavors for the past 30 years) was initiated in 2013, and it is given to individuals from around the world in recognition of the important role they have played for human rights, social justice, peace or social capital in their own region or globally. Furthermore, six youth aged 30 years and below are given an award for each of Muhammad Ali’s Six Core Principles which are Conviction, Dedication, Confidence, Respect, Spirituality & Giving.

This year’s ceremony, which is also a fundraising event, was held at Marriot in Louisville, Kentucky, USA on 19th September. Hadiqa  Bashir was honored for the core principle of Conviction, and it has made her the youngest person and only Pakistani to have received this award!

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