Inspiring Pakistan’s youth to achieve their potential through education and contributing to their communities.
Shah Zaman is leading the way in promoting women’s education in the northern regions of Gilgit Baltistan and Chitral, Pakistan. Since 2010, he has sacrificed his own studies and a comfortable life to become a crusading child rights activists, even working as a home tutor in order to pay the school fees of children he knew so that they could continue their studies. Now that the youth-led educational organization he founded, Milky Way, has donor support Shah Zaman can concentrate on coordinating and fundraising for his movement. In this he has been hugely successful. His foundation currently supports over 100 children with free education, along with an operating community library to complete homework assignments and improve reading skills. In addition, Shah Zaman also provides a Montessori academy in his home where around 50 children are taught by four female teachers.
Shah Zaman’s vision is to initiate a sustainable positive change by promoting social activism and bringing today’s youth into the service of the youth of tomorrow. His efforts are focused on making the youth of today believe it is their responsibility to contribute positively to the social development of their community with a special focus on empowering women to attain education and becomes leaders in society. His ‘I love and serve my village’ initiative for example is aimed at appointing Milky Way University Ambassadors to help aspiring students from disadvantaged provinces with career counseling. These ambassadors are university students from Gilgit Baltistan and Chitral who are studying in national and international universities (including Harvard and almost all the universities of Pakistan). When they return to their regions for holidays they conduct their career counselling sessions with youth from their local areas, also giving motivational talks, helping local students with examination preparation, teaching English, and spreading awareness in order to address the key issues of the regions and to guide the youth toward a bright future. Not only do the young local students benefit from this interaction with university students, but the project is also infusing the ambassadors and others with a sense of social activism and responsibility.
Shah Zaman’s message has been spreading and now many young people, both from Gilgit Baltistan and from other parts of the country have started to join the movement, including parents who thanks to Milky Way’s altruistic principles have begun to make education a priority in the household. He has started a movement that is growing in size and influence. A movement led by the youth that exudes an innate youthful willingness for education, learning, and development for the future in the true sense of the word.