Anita Ghulam Ali has been the Chief Executive of the Sindh Education Foundation (SEF) since the 4th of October, 1992. This set up undertakes various educational initiatives and consultancies both for local and international organizations. Professor Ali has contributed innumerable exposes on education, development and civil society to many leading national English and Urdu daily newspapers; and several research and analytical assignments. Professor Ali was appointed as Minister for Education, Culture, Science, Technology, Youth and Sports twice. She was later also appointed as the Advisor on Education to the Governor. Prof. Ali is a recipient of the Sitara-e-Imtiaz award for her lifetime contribution to educational and community development issues of the country.
Internationally Awarded CLF Ambassador Zubeida Mustafa - written many articles for CLF and participated in many Plenaries and Sessions -illustrative of her committment to Children and Learning In Los Angeles and in New York, Zubeida Mustafa was honored by the International Women's Media Foundation and the U.S. media elite with the Courage in Journalism Lifetime Achievement Award.
Khaled Anam is a popular Pakistani TV artist as well as a musician and singer. He has an opinion on everything and he doesn’t shy away from speaking his mind. He is passionate about children. In fact, he is passionate about quite a few things: politics, music, parenting, environment, education. His new music album ‘Ray’ Say Rail Chali is geared towards children between the ages of five through 10. Abroad, children’s educational music and programming has been popular since the ’80s, just the way it was in Pakistan back in the day. However, after the likes of Sohail Rana, not much work has been carried out in this genre for a decade or so. Khaled, who has been at the forefront of children’s music and was even involved in the Urdu version of Sesame Street, called Open Sesame, has introduced his album hoping to bridge the gap between then and now. He has been in the Pakistani media industry for over two decades, so it can easily be said that he is one of the experienced heads.
Adeel Hashmi is one of the most popular and well known young director, Actor and model in the world of media in Pakistan. He is a popular personality in pakistani youth. Adeel Hashmi has been writing, acting, anchoring and directing for and on Television for the past 10 years. His dramas are not only trend setters in every way but are hugely popular both with Pakistani audiences and abroad. Adeel Hashmi is one of the most popular and well known young directors in the world of media in Pakistan.
Adeel's sense of humor, his inclination towards literature & reading and family background, all insisted him to be a part of Children's Literature Festival.
Rumana Husain cofounded the Bookgroup in 1988, focusing on children’s Urdu language books. She has written and illustrated over 50 children’s books and numerous teacher’s manuals for the Bookgroup, for the Oxford University Press, the Education Research and Development Centre (ERDC) and for Peak Publications (Danesh Publications). She has conducted a number of teacher-training workshops in Pakistan. In October 2010 she was invited to attend a children’s book festival in South Korea as an illustrator for a Peace Story book, an anthology with 22 stories from around the world. Currently she is working on a book on street professions. She also contributes articles to daily Dawn and The News, and to Libas magazine.
Kishwar Naheed, Sitara-e-Imtiaz is an Urdu poet from Pakistan known for her pioneering feminist poetry. Kishwar Naheed held administrative roles in various national institutions. She was Director General of Pakistan National Council of the Arts before her retirement. She also edited a prestigious literary magazine Mahe naw and founded an organisation Hawwa (Eve) whose goal is to help women without an independent income become financially independent through cottage industries and selling handicrafts. Kishwar has published six collections of poems between 1969 and 1990. She also writes for children and for the daily Jang, a national newspaper. Her poetry has been translated into English and Spanish and her famous poem We Sinful Women gave its title to a ground breaking anthology of contemporary Urdu feminist poetry translated and edited by Rukhsana Ahmad published in London by The Women's Press in 1991. She was awarded for Adamjee Prize of Literature on Lab-e-goya (1969), UNESCO Prize for Children's Literature on Dais Dais Ki Kahanian, Best Translation award of Columbia University, Mandela Prize (1997) and Sitara-e-Imtiaz (2000).
Nadia Jamil is one of the very talented actresses Pakistan has ever got. Apart from picking acting on television, she has been attached to Pakistani theater as well. But this is not all about her. Nadia has been very socially active especially with children and education. She has been seriously working for the programmes of education promotion; hence she is an Ambassador for Children's Literature Festival. She is a great story teller and that is her main lead at the Festival.
Dr. Aarfa Sayida Zehra
Arfa Sayeda Zehra has been a Professor for over forty years and has been intimately associated with issues dealing with women's education and empowerment. She continues to teach as visiting faculty. Presently, Dr. Arfa serves as Chair of the National Commission on the Status of Women, Government of Pakistan. This puts her at the center of discussions about socio-cultural issues in national and international policies that focus on the empowerment of women. Dr. Zehra got her doctorate in History from the University of Hawai'i in 1983 and was a fellow at the East-West Center between 1978 and 1983. She is a member of the Law and Justice Commission of Pakistan, a Federal Government institution, established under an Ordinance (XIV) of 1979. The Commission is headed by the Chief Justice of Pakistan and comprises 12 other members.
Alif Laila Book Bus Library
The Alif Laila Book Bus library is exclusively for children up to 8 years and below. The bus has two decks; the upper deck is for story telling where a female teacher narrates stories to children while the lower deck is stacked with books. Its basic objective is to promote reading culture in Pakistan and evolve solutions to Pakistan's educational problems within the given socio-economic constraints, find strategically effective paths to universal literacy and educational modernization, which would show the quickest results and the most favorable cost-benefit ratios.
Basarat Kazim is director of Alif Laila Book Bus Society. She is also the author of several storybooks for children. For decades she has been providing meaningful education in Pakistan to children, especially girls, from disadvantaged backgrounds. She is responsible for the growth of the Alif Laila (1001 Nights) Book Bus Society that began as a children's library and has grown into an entire educational ethos. Active in a range of pursuits – from art exhibitions in major cities and learning centers in the North West Frontier Province to children's protest marches when a children’s library is threatened with closure – Basarat has introduced the concept of project-based learning in government schools, developed and produced an Urdu literacy kit and initiated child-to-child teaching programs. She is a National Book Foundation award winner and a presenter of seminars and papers. Basarat represents Pakistan at the IBBY Congress, and at NAMBOOK. She resides in Lahore and continues to share her love of books with her grandchildren – and all the children of Pakistan.
Fauzia Minallah is a prominent and a well known artist, author, photographer, environmentalist activist and a political cartoonist based in Islamabad. She is also the founder of Funkor Childart Center. She has been painting since the age of 12 when she was a student of SS Haider (eminent artist from Peshawar). She thinks of her art as windows to the soul that reflects her inner emotions. Fauzia Minallah's passion for art and books is an outcome of her activism for heritage, conservation, environmental and social matters. Through children literature she raises issues of peace, tolerance and justice. Her involvement with children is through a platform that she has provided to them in the shape of Funkor Child Art Centre, carrying out art and book reading workshops for children living in shanty towns, for special children; refugee and Internally Displaced children (IDPs) and so on. Funkor distributes picture books and notebooks with messages on Hygiene, Sanitation and environment protection, free of charge among children. Funkor was short listed for the Bremen Peace award in Germany in 2009, as one of the nominated projects and organizations, which are exemplary in their work for peace, justice and integrity of creation. For democratizing art education and making it accessible to kids from low-income families, so that they too can playfully discover their own creativity
Samar Minallah is a Pakistani documentary filmmaker and a human rights activist. For the past 20 years, Minallah has been advocating for the rights of rural women in Pakistan, first as a freelance journalist and then as an activist documentary filmmaker. She is recipient of the Perdita Huston 2007 Award for her effective media campaign against Swaara and Vaani tribal customs in parts of the North-West Frontier Province and Punjab. She has also won Roberto Rosellin Award in 2009 for highlighting women's rights issues through films. The founder of Ethnomedia, Minallah has been described by the media as the 'Crusader with the Camera,’ an activist fearlessly breaking the silence against various forms of human rights violations in Pakistan through the use of various forms of media. She believes in the power of film to generate dialogue and understanding on issues that are otherwise invisible and unheard. By doing so, she has managed to give a new meaning to advocacy and documentary filmmaking in Pakistan.
Master Ayub Khan
Its real life heroes like Master Ayub Khan who make you believe this country has a bright future ahead. For the last 25 years, this selfless school teacher has been teaching underprivileged in a park in Islamabad. Every evening more than 150 children gather to get education at this make-shift school. Does Ayub get paid for his services? Not at all, he does it for the sheer happiness and joy one gets for giving back to the community.
Fahd Husain, Ambassador for CLF, is a senior journalist and television anchor. He has assisted ITA on various platforms, most importantly, ensuring right to education for every child between 5-16 years. As our ambassador he has conducted journalist trainings across the country about writing and reporting on Child Education across Pakistan. Fahd has more than two decades of experience in print and television. Among other assignments, he has served as an Editor and head of the News Divisions for national TV channels like Express News, Dunya TV and Waqt News. He is currently the CEO for a private channel by the name of Capital TV. He hosts a primetime talk show on Capital TV and is a regular columnist for various newspapers. Fahd has a Masters degree in TV Journalism from Columbia University in New York. He was the first Pakistani to win the prestigious Pulitzer Fellowship for graduating as the top student from the Columbia Journalism School.
Swaleha Alam Shahzada
Swaleha Alam Shahzada has been involved with The Citizens Archive of Pakistan (CAP) since May 2008. She launched CAP’s flagship program The Oral History Project in June 2008. Currently she holds the position of the General Secretary on the Governing Board while in June 2012, she was appointed the Executive Director.
Swaleha has had extensive experience in the field of Finance and Education. She graduated from Greenwich University, Karachi, and worked as a banker and foreign currency trader before realizing her calling was the education sector. She taught Accounting, Economics and Business Management courses to CIE Ordinary and Advanced Level Students for 17 years and held the position of Head of Business Studies Department. Before heading CAP, she worked as the Academic Head at a private school in Karachi.
Zubaida Jalal Khan
Zubaida Jalal Khan pursued her early education in Quetta, and then completed her Masters degree in English Literature from the University of Balochistan. After completing her education, she became an active social worker, and participated in a number of ‘family planning’ programmes, creating awareness among illiterate people. In 1982, she established a Girls Primary School in her native town of Mand, in the Kech District of Balochistan. Based on her work, she was appointed ‘Federal Minister for Education’ by President General Pervez Musharraf. Her work has been highly commended, and she has won a number of awards over the years which include the ‘Pride of Performance’ presidential award for education in 1993, and a gold medal from Balochistan National Foundation for Education in 1998.
Internationally acclaimed author Bapsi Sidhwa was raised in Lahore, Pakistan. She now lives in Houston, Texas. She graduated from Kinnaird College for Women, Lahore. Her 5 novels: Cracking India, The Pakistani Bride, The Crow Eaters, An American Brat, and Water, have been translated and published in several languages. Her anthology City of Sin and Splendour: Writings on Lahore was published in 2006. Among her many honors Sidhwa received the Bunting Fellowship at Radcliffe/Harvard, the Lila Wallace-Reader's Digest Writer's Award, the Sitara-i-Imtiaz, Pakistan's highest national honor in the arts, and the LiBeraturepreis in Germany and the 2007 Primo Mondello Award in Italy. Read more about her awards. Sidhwa, who was on the advisory committee to Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto on Women's Development has taught at Columbia U, University of Houston, Mount Holyoke College, Southampton University and Brandeis. Cracking India (a New York Times Notable Book of the Year and a Quality Paperback Book Club selection), was made into the film Earth by Canadian director Deepa Mehta. Her novel Water is based on Mehta’s film of the same name. Sidhwa’s play, An American Brat, was produced by Stages Repertory Theater in Houston March 2007. It played to full houses and received critical acclaim. Her play, Sock ’em With Honey, played in London in 2003.
Munir Ahmed Badini
Munir Ahmed Badini is a Balochi language novelist and a renowned Balochi writer in Urdu and English. A master's degree holder in philosophy from the University of Punjab, he is the first CSS degree holder in the Nushki district and the second Baloch to become a CSS officer. He has served as the deputy commissioner, commissioner, director and secretary at different posts in the government. He is the author of many Balochi books and was awarded a literary award by the Pakistan Academy of Letters for his first novel, ‘Rekan-e-taha-halke’, which means ‘village in a desert’. He was awarded a pride of performance civilian award by the President of Pakistan for his contribution towards literature. His recent three-volume Balochi novel, ‘Shale-gulen-bazar’ is in fact the largest and most complete Balochi novel to date. He is currently working on other novels as well.
M. Akram Dost Baloch
M. Akram Dost Baloch is one of the founding members of the Department of Fine Arts at the University of Balochistan. He is also the director of ‘Mehrgarh Studio’, and is a member of the Board of Governors, National College of Arts, in Lahore. He developed a keen interest in the history, arts and crafts of his regional homeland, and much of that was incorporated in his work. His bold and reflective paintings are emblematic of Pakistan’s prevalent socio-economic conditions, and frequently have mask like faces and figures. Mr. Baloch has had over 20 solo exhibitions all over Pakistan. His numerous group exhibitions, however, have given him international exposure as well. In 2004, Akram Baloch received the President’s Pride of Performance, the highest art award in Pakistan.
Sania Saeed is a Pakistani actress who is renowned nationally as well as internationally. She has done numerous memorable roles on television. She has been working for Pakistani theater since the age of 10 with her parents. She is just not an actor but also works for women and children.
Young Ambassadors 2011
Warda is a student of grade 12 from Sanjan Nagar Public Education Trust Higher Secondary School (SNPETHSS). She is very fond of books, reading and writing. She is voluntarily involved in CLF publicity campaigns in schools. She is also an active member of pre-reading activities of CLF.
Tuba is a student of grade 11 from Sanjan Nagar Public Education Trust Higher Secondary School (SNPETHSS). She is a good reader and writer. She has been actively involved with CLF team in pre-festival readings, publicity campaigns in schools and spreading awareness about CLF to her surroundings.
Kamini Masood is a student of Grade 10 at Lahore Grammar School. She is managing the ‘Bol Key Lab Azad Hain’ segment in CLF. A young aspiring poetess and writer; Kamini’s poetry and writings have been published in different magazines, newspapers and blogs. Her passion in life is literature, music, world history and international relations.