Do you know a real life hero? Join in the celebration and recognize them before the year is out!
#PakistaniSHEro is trending on Twitter & Pakistanis are welcoming and recognizing men & women who inspired us. 2020 seems to be ending on a higher note as people all over the globe rally to celebrate the positives despite an unprecedented global pandemic that threatened to engulf us all, regardless of race, religion, wealth, or culture.
The hashtag #PakistaniSHEro is doing just that – bringing us inspirational stories that will be remembered in 2020.
Though the hashtag might have started with a bid to recognize female heroes, it is all encompassing now, with twitter hash-tagging all their heroes!
Twitterati has been sharing their journey of strong women who are setting examples of their own!
Dawn has lead the quest for inspiring stories from all over the nation and encouraging contributions to keep the hashtag as organic as possible. Meet Dr. Fatima Azhar, a frontline hero – A Pakistani doctor helping Covid-19 affected patients!
Ye hai hamara Pakistan!
For all brave women out there! Meet the bravest one who smiles despite all the struggles she faces.
Nazo Dharejo is a local hero in Sindh. In the past two decades, she has battled dacoits and has personally fought off several attempts to grab her agricultural land — (armed with just a single Kalashnikov)— while also managing to raise four children and ensuring that her lands remain productive and profitable.
Nazo Dharejo was the first of three daughters born to Haji Khuda Buksh Khan Dharejo in a haveli in Dedhan village, Qazi Ahmed. As was typical for girls in her family, Nazo only studied until the second grade.
Read more on Nazo’s story here.
Meet Arfa Karim Randhawa
Remembering a hero who is no more with us!
According to Pakistan Software Houses Association president Jehan Ara, Arfa was “intelligent beyond her years”.
“In addition to achieving a professional certification at the tender age of nine, she set up and ran a computer training institute for a poor community.
“Her passion for technology, coupled with her vision to use her talent to do something significant for Pakistan and its people, was noteworthy, especially in someone so young.”
Ms Arfa felt the IT industry offered a way out of unemployment for young Pakistanis who were starting their own companies.
Arfa Karim Randhawa, who became the world’s youngest Microsoft Certified Professional at the age of nine, she died after a heart attack following an epileptic fit at the tender age of 16.
After Arfa passed the Microsoft exam in 2004, Bill Gates was so impressed by her that he invited her to the company’s US headquarters.
When he found out she was ill, he also offered medical help and was in touch with her family.
Help carry her mission forward by visiting the Arfa Karim Foundation
For more on Arfa and her exceptional achievements, read here.
Meet Dr. Sania Nishtar
Dr. Sania is a leader (and hero) in global health and sustainable development. Since 2018, she has spearheaded the transformative Ehsaas Poverty Alleviation programme, which has improved the livelihoods of millions of Pakistanis.
In 2020, she is listed in BBC’s 100 Influential Women highlighting those who are leading change and making a difference during these turbulent times.
Dr Sania Nishtar is the founder and President of Heartfile, which began in Pakistan in 1999 as a health information-focused nongovernmental organization and evolved into a think tank on health policy issues. She is also founder of a Health Financing programme that uses a customized IT platform and mobile phones to protect poor patients from medical impoverishment or foregoing health care.
For more on Dr. Sania Nishtar, read here.
Round of applause for women of Pakistan who started their own business!
Who says Pakistani women can’t run their own startup? Meet Shah Puri, a successful independent women who’s empowering millions of young girls and women and setting a marvelous example of launching her own business – more power to her!
Shah Puri is our hero hailing from a small village in Chitral know as Ghoru lasht, Parkusap belonged to a low-income family. Due to extreme poverty, they decided to migrate to Booni (known as the Headquarter) in 1990.
Shah Puri had a grander dream – she wanted to start her own business – a cafe where she could provide tea, samosas, and pakoras, and provide food services to events as well. She got full encouragement and support from her husband and children. They successfully presented their business idea and inspired donors who funded them to establish their cafe in Booni which became the first business operated by a female in the market.
The children decided to call their business “NAN CAFE” which means Mother’s Cafe.
For more on Shah Puri’s story, read here.
The year 2020 is coming to an end but not without its highs – encouraging and accepting religious minorities to participate in Pakistani politics!
Meet Krishna Kohli
Krishna Kumari Kohli – Pakistan’s first female senator from the Dalit community, she was placed at No 48 in 2018 on the annual BBC 100 Women.
Krishna was elected as senator in March after spending many years working for the rights of bonded labourers in Pakistan. She is the first Thari Hindu woman to be elected to the Pakistan senate.
“Krishna was elected to the Pakistan Senate after campaigning for women’s rights, having previously been forced into bonded labour for three years, BBC wrote about her.
For more on Krishna, read here.
Meet the living legend Chacha Sabzaar who has a heart of gold!
Chacha Sabzaar helps tourists navigate mountainous terrain in Pakistan’s Northern areas and volunteers his services generously to all those in need.
Abdul Sattar Edhi – Pakistan’s Heart!
Abdul Sattar Edhi (late) a Pakistani philanthropist and a humanitarian who founded the Edhi Foundation, which runs the world’s largest volunteer ambulance network, along with various homeless shelters, animal shelters, rehabilitation centres, and orphanages across Pakistan!
For more on Abdul Sattar Edhi, read here.
2020 and the years leading up to it, has given us more than its fair share of setbacks, but that is also why it has gifted us heroes who have risen to the occasion, fought for a cause close to their hearts, or even in their daily struggle to survive, have shown us how it’s done, with valiance, and strength – they serve as life lessons for all those who need real life heroes!
The year belongs to all the survivors who served as a shining example in our world. If you have a #PakistaniSHEro story to share, do tweet it and give hope to many who might be struggling to survive!
This article is the collaboration effort of several members of Team FUCHSIA.