Ziauddin Yousafzai, the father of Pakistani education activist Malala, is set to be named an honouree by Promundo, an international consortium geared at furthering gender equality and women’s right via inclusivity.
Soon to be credited as a Promundo #FutureofManhood honouree, Ziauddin, the co-founder of Malala Fund, will be recognised for his efforts in promoting gender equality and “solidarity in empowering girls”.
“For centuries, men have stood in the way of women’s freedom and advancement,” says Ziauddin Yousafzai, according to a press release on Promundo’s website.
“But manhood should be about standing up for the equal rights of all people. Our societies will thrive when more men start supporting every woman’s right to learn and lead,” he added.
Ziauddin is one of the eight people who were selected by a board that comprises “24 global experts, academics, and practitioners on the topic of gender justice”.
Other honourees alongside Malala’s father include Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, filmmaker Jennifer Siebel Newsom, United Nations’ Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, Venezuelan transgender activist Tamara Adrián, Washington DC Councilmember David Grosso, Icelandic ambassador Geir Haarde, and Center for Urban Families founder and CEO Joseph Jones.
The honourees from “6 countries [have been] called to envision the future of manhood” and “for their work to inspire men to action in #MeToo and #TimesUp era”.
These honourees have worked to “eradicate harassment, break gender stereotypes, and create a world where men are true activists and allies in reaching equality” and will continue to do so.
At the moment, the world is on a rollercoaster ride that is casting out men who prey on women, engage in sexual abuse and harassment, and have, for too long, controlled the power dynamics.
This means that women need to stand up and snatch their rights, call out their abusers, and hold accountable those who have participated in or carried out abuse, and for that to happen, men who believe in gender equality and equitable opportunities need to step forward as supporters.
While it may take almost a century for the world to see complete and proper equality, as the World Economic Forum predicts, policymakers around the globe are currently “increasingly paying attention to why men matter for gender equality”.
Gary Barker, the President and CEO at Promundo, explains that men have been seen “as the obstacles” in the past and present with regard to working for gender equality and rightly so, “we must call men out and demand equality”.
At the same time, however, “we also must build on the men and women who already believe manhood can be positive, healthy, nonviolent, and peaceful”.
Promundo believes that “men and boys must see themselves as allies in the process” of achieving women’s rights, and, thereby, make the world a humane place for everyone, its website states.
“Working with men and boys to transform harmful gender norms and unequal power dynamics is a critical part of the solution to achieving gender equality.”
“Men and boys also benefit when harmful norms are challenged.”