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Mehwish Niaz

Mehwish Niaz - 2019 Nominee
Position: Youth Advocate/Founding Director
Organization: Laureate Foundation
Current Location: Pakistan, Asia
M-Phil from Kinnaird College for women Lahore
Additional Degrees and Certifications:
Bachelors in Arts (BA Hons)
Major: Development Communication/Media Studies
Kinnaird College for Women, Lahore
Thesis: Role of sarcasm in promoting a political talk show

Graphic Designing Certification
University of the Punjab

CERTIFICATION PROGRAMS

a. Youth Peer Education Network for sexual and reproductive Health Rights
b. Rural Women Leadership Program, KHOJ research and publications Centre
c. “Political Economy Analysis through Gender Lens”-SDPI Pakistan
a. “Long Term Vision and Strategic Planning” by capacity institutionalization project (CIP) Church World Service
b. Certified Training on “Project Management Plan” (PMP) focused on Result Framework by (The Asia Foundation and USAID Citizen’s Voice Project)
c. Certified Professional on Volunteer management system by (Volunteer Services Overseas VSO)
d. Consultative Training on Branding, Marking for Gender Equity Program,USAID and Aurat Foundation
e. Monitoring and Evaluation Training for Program Mangers,(Active Citizen’s Program) British Council
f. Training of Facilitator (Active Citizen’s Program) British Council
g. Gender Sensitization Session for Print Media Writers, USAID and Individual land
h. Action Research 9 weeks course –Church World Services Pakistan (CWS)
Awards Received:
  • Award:
    Centenary Ambassador
    Awarding Organization:
    World Association for Girl Guides and Girl Scouts
    Date Awarded:
    June 1, 2010
  • Award:
    Youth Volunteer of the year
    Awarding Organization:
    Government of Punjab Social welfare Department
    Date Awarded:
    March 23, 2008
  • Award:
    Young champion for education
    Awarding Organization:
    UNICEF Pakistan
    Date Awarded:
    May 21, 2007
75 Public Votes Reached!
Mehwish Niaz has proved how much one person’s efforts can make a difference in the lives of others. I am a witness of countless girls she had helped over the years.She sensitized girls over reproductive health in areas far away from health facilities – Nominator
Describe your contributions to and achievements in family planning.

As young girl of 7, contributing to Life skills based education to empower my peer community,the journey then transformed to a broad goal of supporting youth to create a life of their own choice. The reproductive health issues and child marriages consequent of several health issues for young girls is a demon to deal with. I started my efforts through a small group of girls in a rural area and that led to 111 young women hubs spread over the country. Community sensitization, advocacy workshops for girls are major dimensions of my work to address the very issue of women’s health. 112 workshops have been organized and about 3659 beneficiaries directly involved. It plays an important role in bringing change in behaviors and practices of people.

What sparked your passion for family planning?

During my years working and traveling in Pakistan as a youth advocate. I have observed countless women deprived of their reproductive rights. It is also one of the most inhuman action to a person. I have encountered girls who literally had no idea about their reproductive health and all they knew is that once they hit puberty it’s time to be with a man and do what he says. This vicious circle continues for generations. This triggered my capacity to support them through knowledge and opportunity.

Give one or two examples of how you display leadership in your family planning work.:

I have worked for several organizations before I came up with my own initiative. where I have managed entire program structures funded by MTV,Y-PEER,Family Planning association within youth communities. I started MY LIFE MY CHOICE project alone in the red zones of the country for women and managed to replicate 111 hubs throughout the country. I also led my organization in a supported session in women deliver 2016. I am an active member of Girls not brides and projected on its website.

If you are named a winner of 120 under 40, how will you use this new platform and the $1000 grant to advance your work? :

I intend to initiate a seed fund from the grant money to my women hubs and the most active hubs shall receive a seed amount to increase their activities to at least a group of 100 more girls. I will videograph compelling stories of the girls and boys who survived from STD'S and continued to refuse the early marriages or stood against the odds through or after our sessions.The award amount will support my change makers to greet each other's work in a country event. and I would be able to enhance.

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