Nobel Prize winner Kailash Satyarthi headlines the #UpForSchool youth rally in London

Up for School or #upforschool campaign


Nobel Peace Prize winner Kailash Satyarthi will head an amazing line-up of guests and young activists at the #UpForSchool youth rally in London tomorrow.

The event, titled Our Future, Our Rights – Youth Rising #UpForSchool, is hosted by A World at School and the Overseas Development Institute (ODI).

Kailash, who won his award for rescuing thousands of children from child slavery in his native India, will be joined at the Southbank Centre by an exciting and energetic array of children’s campaigners, performers, teachers, students and young people with inspirational messages. They include Kainat Riaz and Shazia Ramzan, who were also injured when Pakistani schoolgirl Malala Yousafzai was shot by the Taliban on her school bus in 2012.

The event marks the 25th anniversary of the Convention of the Rights of the Child and is also the official UK launch of the #UpForSchool Petition – which calls on world leaders to keep their promise that every child will be in school and learning by the end of 2015.

Kailash said: “I am #UpForSchool. Please join me in protection of children’s rights to education.” Below you can watch his video message and clips from the #UpForSchool rally in New York.

The rally will be live-streamed to young people around the world. You can watch it here from 2.30pm UK time on November 19.

The event will be hosted by Ade Adepitan, the British TV presenter and Paralympics medallist. The audience of several hundred people will also hear from ODI Executive Director Kevin Watkins and another prizewinner – Ann Cotton, founder and president of the charity Camfed (Campaign for Female Education). Earlier this month she was awarded the 2014 WISE Prize for Education for her work in marginalised communities in Africa.

There will also be a performance by Amrit Kaur Lohia, who is an A World at School Global Youth Ambassador. Special video messages will be shown from United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and UNICEF Executive Director Anthony Lake.

The London rally follows the hugely successful #UpForSchool Petition launch in New York in September. The event was held during the United Nations General Assembly week and was attended by campaigners including rights advocate Graca Machel, Hadiza Bela Usman from the #BringBackOurGirls movement, UN envoy on youth Ahmad Alhendawi and UN Special Envoy for Global Eucation Gordon Brown.

Despite promises made by world leaders in 2000 to have every child in school by the end of 2015, 58 million are still being denied their right to education – and schools and school children are being attacked.

To drive action over the next 400 days, young leaders have created a global call to action – the #UpForSchool Petition – to demonstrate unprecedented public support for education.

The petition is backed by a coalition of more than 100 businesses, faith leaders, NGOs, teachers and influential individuals with the aim of making it the biggest petition in history. It will be delivered to world leaders at the UN General Assembly in September 2015.

You can make your voice heard by signing the #UpForSchool Petition now.

You can also read an interview with Kailash Satyarthi by Gordon Brown, UN Special Envoy for Global Education.

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