Meet The Malala Of Syria

Mizune, 14, has helped make it possible for 70 per cent of the children at Zaatari refugee camp in Jordan to go to school...


by Sophie Wilkinson |
Published on

Mizune, 14, has helped make it possible for 70 per cent of the children at Za’atari to go to school Over 2.6m Syrians have fled to neighbouring countries to escape the brutal conflict - during which President Assad has allegedly used sarin gas to poison his own citizens – that has been raging throughout the country for three years.

In Jordan, the Zaatari camp is home to 104,494 refugees, despite having a capacity of 60,000. Though in this situation, there’d not be much hope for many of the children there to attend school, one girl is making it her mission to encourage families to get their children into education.

Mizune, who is just 14, is sure ‘we can help and improve our nation with education’, and has been going anywhere she can in the camp to talk to children and their parents about the importance of getting a good education: ‘It’s very important to me and important to society that I raise awareness. I want to emphasise the importance of education.’

Noticing UNICEF building schools in Zaatari, Mizune, who wants to be a journalist one day, set out to help them to get as many pupils as possible: ‘Children are the most important people in society,’ she told CNN, ‘We would go to tents and talk to people about their most pressing problems that prevent them from going to school. We would try to find solutions and talk about the rights of children to education’

According to Michele Servadei from UNICEF, the biggest obstacle to overcome to get those children into school is their parents: ‘In many cases, parents think that they're going to go back (to Syria) soon, and it's not worth sending the children to be educated.’

Now, 70 per cent of children in the camp go to school, which Mizune heralds as a success: ‘Parents influence their kids, so the most important thing was educating the parents. People listened, and some had different points of view, but we were able to convince a big number to come to school.’

And though many people pass through the camp, leaving suddenly to other camps, permanent housing somewhere else or, even returning to Syria, Mizune wants to ensure that children have all the chances while they spend an indefinite time in the camp. ‘A kid will face many challenges in their lives, and it's important to take advantage of education despite the circumstances, because life will go on.'

To donate to UNICEF's children's appeal fund, visit

Follow Sophie on Twitter @sophwilkinson

This article originally appeared on The Debrief.

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