Young people demand education, A World at School’s Hellen tells Oslo summit

Up for School or #upforschool campaign

Hellen makes her passionate speech to the summit

The voice of youth took to the stage at the Oslo Education Summit today when Hellen Griberg delivered an impassioned plea.

One of A World at School’s network of 500 Global Youth Ambassadors in 85 countries, Hellen told world leaders, education ministers and leading NGOs that education gives young people a purpose.

She said: “The struggle for education is a liberation struggle. Education gives us freedom and hope. We must have hope.

“This is a civil rights movement led by young people demanding our right to education. I am a civil rights leader. I am not asking. I am demanding.”

Hellen meets education campaigner Malala Yousafzai

Hellen told the summit that eight million people around the world have signed the #UpForSchool Petition, which calls for action to be taken by world leaders to get every child into school and learning.

She added: “We know that nothing changes without pressure. Therefore, we have been building support in every corner of the world.

Related story: #UpForSchool Petition hits 8m signatures

“And I am bringing those voices directly into this important summit. These eight million people are telling you that it is time to take action.”

Hellen was born in Zambia, adopted and raised in Norway and studied at university in Scotland. She said: “I was given an education. I was given hope. A hope that is denied to 62 million girls, eager to learn.

Discussing the #UpForSchool Petition with Erna Solberg

“This petition demands you to take action. To make sure that every girl is in school and that every child has a trained teacher.”

Hellen finished her passionate speech by saying: “When I leave the summit I want to know what can I say about the outcome of the summit and what is the next step? I want to ask everyone in the audience: Are #UpForSchool. Because I am.”

Before her speech, Hellen had been busy at the Norwegian summit, meeting dignatories including Malala Yousafzai and Norwegian Prime Minister Erna Solberg, giving media interviews about global education and gathering signatures for the #UpForSchool Petition.

She also took time to check out A World at School’s mural at the summit venue – it depicts the kind of youth marches that our Global Youth Ambassadors have been holding in many countries.

Some more picture highlights of Hellen’s time at the Oslo summit

At our mural with Peter Vesterbacka from Angry Birds

Working on her speech at the Raddison Blu Plaza Hotel in Oslo

Hellen gets a signature for the #UpForSchool Petition

Hellen gives a TV interview about her work as a GYA

Discussing the #UpForSchool Petition with a delegate

Discussing the #UpForSchool Petition with a delegate

With UN education envoy Gordon Brown and Peter Vesterbacka

Make your voice heard too – sign the #UpForSchool Petition.

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