Meet Namira Salim, the first, to-be, Pakistani astronaut in space! She received her sub-orbital space flight training in the USA in 2007 and is one of the 100 founders in the Virgin Galactic Club.
“I’m hoping that when the flight happens I can break new ground for Muslim and Pakistani women to enter into fields considered out of bounds for them,” Salim told Reuters ten years ago.
Conquering The North & South Poles!
However, before conquering space, Namira Salim ventured out into the cold. In 2007 and 2008, Namira conquered the North And South Poles respectively. At the South Pole, she proudly hoisted Pakistan’s flag at 90 degrees south.
“I also hoisted my own universal peace flag on both Poles because as a citizen of Pakistan I wanted to send out the message of peace and goodwill to the rest of the world,” said Salim in an interview with Gulf News in 2008.
Namira was awarded the Tamgha-e-Imtiaz in 2011. She also holds a spot in the Pakistan Power 100’s “Women Power 100” list, along with notable Pakistani women, including Fahemida Mirza and Hina Rabanni Khar. She was also the first Asian to sky-dive off of Mount Everest!
Namira Salim On How Space Can Be Used For World Peace
Namira Salim is a supporter of Space tourism and Space diplomacy. She believes that political boundaries tend to disappear for astronauts in space. “When they come back, they have a whole new perspective and all they want to do is work for peace on earth.”, stated Namira in an interview with Dawn.
In 2015 Namira Salim launched “Space Trust”. “Space is the new frontier for peace on earth”, states Namira. At their OG Summit, they seek to utilize space for peacemaking and conflict resolution on Earth.
Namira’s non-profit organization is also spear-heading disaster risk reduction campaigns that enable developing countries to use all types of space-based information which helps in disaster management, disaster mitigation, and disaster preparedness.
Space Trust is also promoting the inclusion of arts in S.T.E.M fields. They believe that the imposed separation of art and science in conventional education is a hindrance to both creativity and technological innovation. Thus, they’re aiming to engage young women in order to provide a more holistic outreach to future women leaders in this Space Age.
Moreover, Space Trust also has its very own “Space Peace Prize” which is awarded biennially to a key Space actor implementing Space for Peaceful Uses of Science and Technology on Earth.
We’re so proud of the example Namira Salim is setting for young women in Pakistan and throughout the world. Indeed, no frontier, including space, is out of bounds if you have your heart and mind set on it!