Mais Almzainy: A 9-Year-Old's Pursuit of Education Amidst Conflict
Mais Almzainy, a spirited 9-year-old, attends Al-Sheikh Eileen Primary School in Gaza. Despite the ongoing conflict, she remains passionate about learning and dreams of a brighter future. "I miss my friends, my teachers, and the everyday routine of going to school. I worry about falling behind in my studies," she says, determined to continue her education.
Her mother, Heba Nijim, shares her concerns about the impact of the conflict on her daughter's education. "My biggest concern is that my child will fall behind in her studies and struggle to catch up once the conflict is over," she says. Heba supports Mais's learning by using online resources and books at home, despite challenges like electricity shortages and poor internet connection in Gaza.
Mais was excited to present a special speech at her school's morning assembly, but the loud bombs disrupted her plans. "All the excitement for my speech went away," she recalls. Now, her school is closed due to safety concerns, and she wonders about the impact on her education and future.
Determined to keep learning, Mais continues her studies at home, completing assignments sent by her teacher through WhatsApp. "I practice reading and math on my own. It's important to keep learning so that I can follow my dreams," she shares.
As a young student, Mais believes that education is a basic right for every child. Her mother, Heba, echoes this sentiment, calling for the protection of education and civilians during conflict. "All children have the right to quality education in a peaceful place and environment, and it should not be taken away from them because of violence or conflict," she says.
Both Mais and Heba dream of a day when children in Gaza can wake up without fear and enjoy their childhood. "I hope the grown-ups can find peaceful solutions to the conflict, so I and many others like me can keep dreaming of our bright futures," Mais says.
The Education Above All Foundation is committed to protecting education under attack and ensuring that every child has the opportunity to learn in a safe environment. Our #UniteToProtect campaign aims to raise global awareness of the importance of education, calling for collective action to safeguard the future of the next generations. By guaranteeing the right to safe, quality education for every child, we can empower them to overcome adversity, build resilience, and contribute to a more peaceful and prosperous world. Join us in our mission to #UniteToProtect and secure justice for victims of attacks on education, so that children like Mais can continue to learn, grow, and follow their dreams.