BBC has revealed its list of 100 inspiring and influential women for 2021. From Pakistan, the youngest-ever Nobel Peace Prize laureate Malala Yousafzai, disability leader Abia Akram, and founder of drug rehabilitation center Laila Haidri have made it to the list this year.
The BBC list this year highlights women ‘who are hitting “reset” – women playing their part to reinvent our society, our culture, and our world.’
Among them is the first female prime minister Samoa Fiamē Naomi Mata’afa, head of the Vaccine Confidence Project Professor Heidi J Larson, and acclaimed author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie.
Pakistani activist for female education and a Nobel Peace Prize laureate, Malala Yousafzai, has been featured on the list. She has been vocal for the rights of young women to education repeatedly since the age of 11. The Taliban also shot her for the same reason.
“Hundreds of millions of girls are out of school today. I want to see a world where every girl can access 12 years of free, safe, and quality education; where all girls can learn and lead,” says Malala Yousafzai
Abia Akram is a Pakistani activist in the disability movement. In 1997, Abia faced challenges managing her disability as a student, so she initiated the Special Talent Exchange Program (Step). She is the founder of the National Forum of Women with Disabilities, the first woman from Pakistan to be nominated co-ordinator for the Commonwealth Young Disabled People’s Forum. She is also working to include disability in the UN 2030 Agenda and its sustainable development goals.
“To reset the world after the Covid-19 pandemic, we must act jointly to improve all aspects of our societies on which the ‘new normal’ will be built, and we should see far more inclusive development as a result, ” says Abia Akram
Born in Pakistan, Laila Haidri is the founder of Kabul’s drug rehabilitation center, Mother Camp. She has helped thousands of Afghans regardless of the taboos concerning drug users with her efforts. Her savings financed the Mother Camp. The recovering addicts then ran her restaurant.
“I hope that awareness will spread so that we can have a more moral and humane world. We live in an interconnected world where the vote of an American citizen can fundamentally change the fate of an Afghan, ” says Laila Haidari
Almost half of this year’s list is occupied by Afghan women who appear in the list as anonymous and without their photos. The takeover of the Islamist militant group in August 2021 has altered the lives of Afghani women, with major restrictions on receiving education and working.
Mahira Khan Makes it to the List of BBC 100 Women 2020. Read the full story here:
Each year, BBC chooses 100 influential women from around the globe for their resilience and leadership qualities. This year, our very own heartthrob actress, Mahira Khan, made it to the list for being outspoken. Khan has openly refused to endorse skin-lightening creams in Pakistan. Other than that, she is spoken against sexual violence in the region.
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