Community & Government

Malala's Advocacy Skills

Malala Yousafzai

Lesson time 10:40 min

Malala shares the skills that have strengthened her advocacy work. Learn how to use talents you already have to gain more traction in your own advocacy. She also walks you through the four-stage framework she used to carry out her campaigns.

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Topics include: Passion and Reasoning · Storytelling · Repetition in Messaging · Leadership · My Advocacy Cycle


[MUSIC PLAYING] - We all have some special skills and talents that we can bring into our advocacy work. It could be from writing, from speaking, to painting, and art, to even like just understanding data. All of these things, like, they have a role to play. They have a part to play. So take a moment and think about, what skills do you have? What talents do you have that you can use as part of your advocacy work, as part of your activism, that you can bring to the table? And anything that you think that you don't have, you can work on it. You can practice it and improve it. [MUSIC PLAYING] For me as part of my advocacy, passion is the start. Because when you have that energy in your heart, and you feel like that you want to be out there and make the change happen, this can also guide you in deciding what your mission is. Then you need some reasoning. You need to ensure that you understand the issue. You understand its causes. You understand what factors are playing a role. And what are the factors that you would want to focus on in addressing that issue and understanding the overall power dynamics of who's involved? Who can play a crucial role? And how can you make that change happen? For example, when we look at climate change, there are things that we can do on an individual level. What are the decisions that we are taking on day-to-day basis that is impacting climate change? And when we look carefully at that, we can change our own behavior in making that change happen. So for an advocate, they could say, that I want to raise awareness. Because through raising awareness, I can inform people. And then it's figuring out, what are the ways in which you can build pressure? That could be through protests. We can also talk about it in our schools. We can engage students. We can engage parents. We can write to our local member of parliament or local politician. We need to go beyond just raising awareness. We need to actually reach out to the people who are in positions of decision-making. Once you understand it, then it helps you in building a clearer narrative, a clearer strategy for how you want to do advocacy. [MUSIC PLAYING] The night was filled with the noise of artillery fire, and I woke up three times. But since there was no school, I got up later, at 10:00 AM. Afterwards, my friends came over, and we discussed our homework. Today is the 15th of January, the last day before the Taliban's edict comes into effect. And my friend was discussing homework as if nothing out of the ordinary had happened. Messaging and storytelling is about creating a clear and convincing point or argument. What are you trying to say? What do your words reflect? Who are you addressing? When I was writing my BBC blog, I wanted to make sure that I tell the truth. I explain what is happening in my everyday life. I'm finding it difficult to walk to school. I'm scared. Today there was a curfew, because there ...

About the Instructor

When she first took a stand, Malala simply acted on her belief that all Pakistani girls like her had a right to education. Now the youngest Nobel Peace Prize laureate in history teaches you how to fight injustice in the world and in your everyday life, starting with your own community. Learn Malala’s framework for influencing change: Research issues, build a strategy, take action, and create an impact right where you are.

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Malala Yousafzai

Nobel Prize–winning activist Malala teaches you how to be an activist in your own community, from research and strategy to action and impact.

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