“I’m starting an advocacy group at my university to break the stigma around domestic violence. We have about seventy members so far.
“Now I have someone to play with!” (Manila, Philippines)
“I had to break up with my girlfriend last week. We’d been trying to hide our relationship because our parents think we’re too young to date.
Thanks to everyone who donated to the fundraiser this week! As of this moment, $1,836,000 has been raised from over 35,000 donors.
“There were no jobs during the civil war, so my dad went from being an engineer to selling food. We had a shop in the main market of Mogadishu and during the day I helped him run the business.
“I was twenty when the civil war came to Somalia. It started as a normal day for me. I woke up that morning thinking about applying to university.
“My parents fled Myanmar twenty-five years ago, so I was born in these camps. I feel like a prisoner here.
“The military arrested a leader of our village and took him out into the forest. The next morning, we broke into small groups and everyone went searching for him.
“It was 2 AM when they came to our village. They set all our houses on fire. There was no time to grab anything.
“I was walking home from the paddy fields when I heard the sound of a bullet. A young boy fell right next to me.
“They came to our house first because it’s closest to the road. We thought they just wanted to talk. We thought they’d ask us some questions, and then they’d leave.
“I looked out my window and saw smoke coming from the village across the river. At first I thought it was a casual fire.
“Nobody was prepared for this. There are now 700,000 people trying to figure out how to survive in the middle of nowhere.
“They didn’t say a word. They just started firing into the air and lighting our houses on fire. The burning began on the north side of our village, so we fled south into the forest.
“It’s been happening since our grandparents’ time. We haven’t had a day of peace. Every night the military would knock on our door and demand that we give them sheep or goats.
“It was early in the morning when the military came. I woke up to a big sound that sounded like a bomb blast.
During my recent trip to Bangladesh, I spent several days outside of Cox’s Bazaar, where hundreds of thousands of Rohingya refugees have settled into camps.
“I was tired of renting a room. It was so much pressure. Every month would pass by so quickly and the landlord would be knocking on my door again.
“This is my older sister’s business. I’m just helping her out. I barely knew her for most of my life.
“We must teach religion in our schools. We must start them really, really young. As soon as they know how to point out basic things like ‘rock, milk, tree.’ That is the best time to start.