Malala Yousafzai appears on the cover of Teen Vogue

Former Teen Vogue cover models have included Ariana Grande, Dua Lipa and Kylie Jenner.

This month, the star chosen is a little different. It’s Nobel laureate Malala Yousafzai, famous for surviving being shot by the Taliban after speaking out against their oppression.

The activist was featured in a story called Decade of Youth rising, part of a series looking back at youth activism as a defining part of the 2010s.

 

In her cover interview, Malala speaks to Teen Vogue executive editor Samhita Mukhopadhyay about her fight to secure education for girls, the power of Greta Thunberg, and mental health.

She told the magazine, which is now digital only: ‘What has given me hope is that the last decade was a decade of youth activism, but the next one is going to be about youth change-making, and that’s what gives me hope.

‘It’s like we have done our activism; we have done enough to raise our voice. And I think the next step is now let’s make the change, let’s be the change-makers, let’s get more involved in this.’


Speaking out about the millions of young people who hit the streets for action on climate change, she said: ‘For me to see millions and millions of young people, not just in the US, not just in the UK – the so-called developed countries – but from all across the world, in Pakistan, in India, in Kenya, you see these young girls, especially women that are coming forward, and you also see older people in the crowds – I think that’s when you realise how powerful the voices of these young people can be. And I think awareness is important. That’s the first step towards a change.’

Asked if she had ever struggled with mental health issues or depression, she said: ‘Yes, but I have always asked for help. That’s the key that I would say to everybody. Even if you feel “I don’t think the issue is too big. I don’t think I’m in a depression or anxiety yet” or “I don’t think it’s [bad enough to] still go out and ask for help”.

‘I always tell things to my parents. I always say things to somebody that I know closely, some of my friends or somebody in school.There are so many things in the world; a lot of them are really depressing. It’s really sad what’s happening. And I think for us, what we need to do is remain positive because our sadness can’t change the world. Our sadness can’t really help us resolve those issues.’

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