The story of Lives For Literacy, L4L for short, begins in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. President Yasmin Farah Peer, a World Literacy Foundation Ambassador for Quebec and Political Science & Human Rights student at Concordia University, desired to do something extending her impact, and on July 27th, 2020, Ms. Peer founded L4L along with two other WLF Ambassadors, Mr. Arman Lakhu and Ms. Kelly Leung.
Upon establishing the core Canadian team with Sian Prasad, Lucia Aprile & Julia Zhu they opened up calls for volunteers internationally from Angola to Indonesia, Ethiopia, France, United Kingdom Tunisia, India, Columbia, Mexico, Nepal, Pakistan, South Africa, Yemen, Nigeria and Vietnam. The wildfire of volunteerism rapidly spread and today L4L is a host to more than 150 students from over 50 countries. We have warmly welcomed Ambassadors Ms. Al-nood from Palestine and Mr. Farhan Ali Baloch from Pakistan, respectively.
Our vision is to see a community formed of advocates who wish to bring to light a world where education is a fundamental right to every human being. There are a number of actions taken to actualize our collective goal including: the creation of educational and informative infographics, empowering the voices of student volunteers and activists, facilitating innovation and international collaboration during the pandemic and beyond, and brainstorming ideas as well as collaborating on projects through research, advocacy, education, and translations.
Today, we are proud to say we have realized our vision in the year 2020 in the following ways: We have hosted events for World Literacy Day, presented to Haitian, Mexican, and Indian Youth as well as conducted outreach for Children in Nepal for Human Rights Day, and inviting Comedian Andy Feds to speak to us on World AIDS Day. Further, We’ve invited author and humanitarian, Abhijit Naskar to, to speak on world harmony and peace. Among our guests numbers the Cuddle Couples group in a mental health roundtable discussion. We have also run an event for Education Heroes Storytelling and garnered over a hundred sign ups from medical students worldwide for the L4L Health Literacy Eureka Study Initiative. Looking to the future, we have already planned a Refugees and Migrations counselling session as well as will be launching the R.E.A.D. Book Club.
We are also continuously adding to our portfolio of resources such as book reviews, blog posts, Word-of-the-Day’s, UN Human Rights Declaration Articles, Reath-a-thons, and finally for the promotion of human rights as a whole, we’ve raised our voices for the rights of transgender, and in the recognition of Remembrance Day and Migration Days of Importance.
From humble beginnings, in the heart of President Peer and in the hearts of all who have volunteered, we share pride in the path and accomplishments of Lives For Literacy. Finally, we here at L4L humbly acknowledge the lands we live and work upon that have been historically and unfairly taken from the populations of the Indigenous, First Nations, Métis, Inuit, and Aboriginals.
Yasmin Farah Peer, President & Founder of Lives For Literacy.