Nobel Prize winner Malala Yousafzai to partner with Social Bite on ‘international sleep out’

HER daring sacrifice to bravely ensuring girls across the world received a proper education gained international recognition.

And now, Nobel Laureate Malala Yousafzai is set to help Edinburgh charity Social Bite take their campaign to end homelessness global after agreeing to partner with the social enterprise on an worldwide sleep-out against displacement.

The activist, who became the youngest ever winner of the Nobel Peace Prize after surviving a Taliban assassination attempt while returning home from school, will collaborate with the Capital-based charity for the ‘World’s Big Sleep Out’ event through her Malala Fund foundation.

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Malala Yousafzai chats with Josh Littlejohn of Socialbite at Vesta, Queensferry Street in Edinburgh. Pic: Stewart Attwood

Nobel Laureate Malala marked the announcement with a visit to Social Bite’s Vesta restaurant on Wednesday.

Social Bite co-founder, Josh Littlejohn MBE described hosting Malala as “an honour,” calling her “an inspiration”.

Over 50,000 people in cities across the globe will sleep out on the streets in December to raise awareness of homelessness as part of a new event, following on from Social Bite’s successful ‘Sleep in the Park’ demonstrations in 2017 and 2018.

A fundraising target in the millions of pounds will be distributed to a range of homelessness and refugee focused charities throughout the world, with the aim of getting 50 cities involved in the campaign.

Malala Yousafzai, activist for female education and the youngest Nobel Prize laureate, leaves Vesta Restaurant & Bar in Edinburgh surrounded by security.

As well as partnering with Malala Fund, the project will also work with UNICEF USA and the Institute of Global Homelessness in planning the event.

Malala, 21, and two other girls were shot by a Taliban gunman in an assassination attempt in retaliation for her activism while on a bus in the Swat District of her native Pakistan in 2012.

She was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize later that year.

Malala said: “Educated girls have the power to transform our world. But without a home or access to education, millions of refugee and displaced girls are unable to fulfil their potential.”

Malala Yousafzai's charitable organisation 'Malala Fund' will work with Social Bite to help homeless and displaced people around the world.

“I am excited to partner with Social Bite and have their support for Malala Fund’s work to get refugee girls get back in school.”

She will later take part in a moderated Q&A with BBC Foreign Affairs Correspondent John Simpson CBE at the Edinburgh International Conference Centre (EICC), attended by almost 1,300 individuals who had raised the most amount of money for Social Bite’s 2018 Sleep in the Park event on December 8.

The mass fundraiser saw around 10,000 people give up their beds for the night, raising a total of £3.6million.

Littlejohn said: “It was such an honour for Social Bite to host Malala’s visit to Scotland. Malala’s fight for girls’ education and the work her foundation does in supporting refugees and creating social justice is an inspiration.”

Social Bite Co-founder Josh Littlejohn said it was 'an honour' to host the youngest Nobel Peace Prize winner at the social enterprise.

“I’m thrilled that Malala’s visit marks the announcement of our World’s Big Sleepout campaign, to bring our ‘Sleep in the Park’ event concept to an international stage.”

He added: “We have seen the power of the events in Scotland in terms of raising significant funds to make a difference to homeless people and to shine the political spotlight on this issue.

Further details on the World’s Big Sleep Out campaign will be announced next month.

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