BY ALI NAQVI –
Hundreds of years ago, stars on a night sky used to guide travelers to find their path. Today stars on earth may shine bright enough to show you the way. Mehwish Hayat is one such star who is currently working for a charity organization called Penny Appeal as their Goodwill Ambassador. She announced her decision to join Penny Appeal on BBC.
Established in 2009, Penny Appeal is a charity organization working for poverty relief and social development of underprivileged classes in Middle East, Africa and Asia. The dispensation of food, drinkable water, shelter for homeless and orphan children as well as emergency medical aid are one of the key areas where the organization is currently working on.
Rebuilding of 5 schools for the rural areas of Sindh is the aim of Mehwish Hayat. To reach her target she is in UK to participate in a charity marathon for Penny Appeal. She will be running 26.2 miles for the cause. “I’m running for education. I’m running for equality. I’m running for Pakistan,” says Mehwish. The schools, once built, will accommodate over 900 students.
We all know that education is the most important sector for any country’s progress. But Pakistan has not invested enough to keep its children in schools. A large number of children especially girls don’t go to school either because of lack of funds or simply because of ignorance and lack of education in the family itself. There is a mindset, mostly in rural and underdeveloped areas, that believes that girls need no education. They don’t see woman as an active or productive part of the social fabric.
Napoleon once said “Give me an educated mother, I shall promise you the birth of a civilized, educated nation.” The importance of woman education cannot be emphasized more. The initiative of Penny Appeal to take on board Mehwish Hayat for the charity work for education is highly commendable.