Saturday, 6 June 2015

Teen Wears Graduation Dress Made of Paper to Support the Malala Fund

Teen Wears Homemade Paper Graduation Dress to Support the Malala Fund

Now that's a statement-making dress! 

Eighteen-year-old Erinne Paisley wore a homemade paper dress to her high school graduation to bring awareness to the Malala Fund, a cause she has been passionate about since hearing Pakistani activist Malala Yousafzai speak last year at We Day U.K. 

"To be in the same space as her, even though it was a massive stadium, was so moving," Paisley tells PEOPLE. "She was so humble and real, and it made me realize how much [a lack of access to education] is a reality for so many people." 

Paisley handmade a dress out of old pre-calculus notes with the words "I've received my education. Not every woman has that right." painted in red. 

"I think people were just very curious as to what was happening," she says of initial reactions to her dress. "I just wanted to start a conversation because I think that starting conversations outside of your everyday realm is so powerful."
The Victoria, Canada-based teen knew she wanted to use her graduation day as a platform to further her ability to raise awareness and inspire donations to the Malala Fund, which empowers girls through secondary education. 

"I realized how much energy, time and attention goes into graduation and the dresses and all the hype about that, and I thought maybe there could be a way I could redirect that energy and attention," she says. 

"We are celebrating the gift of education, and there are over 62 million girls around the world who don't have access to the right to education, so I was hoping I could [bring attention] to girls who don't get that opportunity," she continues. 

Now that her dress has made the rounds on social media and in the press, Paisley is hoping that just means more donations to the cause. 

"I've heard lots of people say they're aware of something they weren't aware of before, and are donating, which is absolutely amazing," says Paisley, who will be pursuing an undergraduate degree in International Relations at the University of Toronto in the fall. "I want to use the momentum from this to do even more things soon."

1 comment:

  1. Awww how sweet and it's a lovely dress but she should avoid fire and rain :)