Strongsville Rotary Raising Money to Educate Pakistani Women

Shooting of 14-year-old prompts local civic leaders to action


The Rotary Club of Strongsville is leading efforts to raise $10,000 for new and improved educational efforts for young women in Pakistan through the first-ever “Reach Within” campaign. 

Educational efforts will be executed by the Swat Relief Initiative, a nonprofit humanitarian organization in Pakistan, along with Rotary Clubs in the Swat district of Pakistan.

Pledging $1,000 for the project, the Rotary Club of Strongsville emphasizes that Northeast Ohio citizens can participate in the campaign in a multitude of creative ways; everyone can reach within their hearts to make a difference.

This includes, but is not limited to, promoting the “Reach Within” campaign through social networks, making a personal contribution to the efforts, or asking others to give, along with countless other possibilities. 

Funds raised will help achieve universal education, introduce a curriculum based on academic basics and service, form the first parent teacher associations, and devise new teacher training workshops in Pakistan’s Swat Valley Region. 

Malala Yousafzai inspired club members to take action. Yousafzai, 14, was shot in the head by Taliban gunman. She previously advocated for education of girls in Pakistan, and received the National Peace Award of Pakistan in 2011. 

Through the popular petition site change.org, she has been nominated to be a candidate for the 2013 Nobel Peace Prize.

“We hope others join with us to do something positive,” said Laurel Wirtanen-Siloy, international avenue of service director of the Rotary Club of Strongsville.  “Each gift or action, is significant and important. It’s amazing that while we are so far away, we can do something so powerful to impact human lives.”

The Rotary Club of North Royalton also will submit a matching grant to Rotary International, potentially tripling any dollars raised. For more information and to get involved with the “Reach Within” campaign, visit http://bit.ly/W2RH1O


Kim L February 11, 2013 at 06:08 PM
money that would be better spent at home. we send money to some of these countries to teach the children to read and write, and when they grow up all they seemed to have learned was how to write "Death to America " on signs


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