Khadeejah bint Malik: The Poet


“Taking the LSE course as a teen was the first step to becoming a more conscious individual, becoming an ethical leader, and becoming a responsible global citizen.”

Khadeejah became an Earth Charter Young Leader after taking the Leadership, Sustainability and Ethics course in 2017. With being only 15 years old back then, she was one of the youngest people to ever complete the LSE course. Khadeejah was born and raised in Dubai and home- schooled throughout her childhood and youth. Currently, she is studying in 11th grade in Manila, taking the Humanities and Social Sciences strand. She is passionate about cultures, arts, humanities, and sustainable development. With her father being Jordanian and her mother Filipino, she grew up in a multi-cultural environment. Yet, the LSE course taught her a new dimension of what it means to be a global citizen because people from around the world, from all genders, nationalities, and faiths joined.

Because Khadeejah was home-schooled and did not meet many children her age, she used to be rather shy as a teenager. Enrolling in the LSE course seemed like a big step outside of her comfort zone, nevertheless, the took the step and gained confidence through joining the course, facilitating her own workshop, and meeting people from all over the world. She learned about the Earth Charter and the LSE course through her father, who is an educator who considers and applies the Earth Charter principles in his works. Her father has been working with the Earth Charter for many years and held a lecture during an Earth Charter event in Dubai on how education can be a means toward global peace. Their family has been living by the Earth Charter values and principles for many years. Recently, Khadeejah’s younger sister completed the LSE course too. Khadeejah remembers how she felt when enrolling in the LSE course, but also what great value it brought to her:

“I took the step forward, and I challenged myself to step outside my comfort zone, mainly because I’m eager to make a change in this world.”

She remembers how the course empowered her to take action for what is important to her. As part of the LSE course, all participants facilitate a workshop towards the end. Her family supported her in organising the workshop and gave her confidence that everything would work out smoothly. She facilitated a workshop with pupils between 12 to 16 years old and implemented creative activities and the Earth Charter principles in her workshop. Through the course, the positive experience when facilitating the workshop, and getting to know other participants, she became more confident.

Five years have passed since Khadeejah finished the course. She has stayed in contact with the Earth Charter and engaged in the Young Leaders network. That the bi-monthly meetings happen, thanks to her time zone, in the middle of the night or during Ramadan never hinders her from joining. She is connected to other young leaders via social media and has collaborated with them for several events. Khadeejah loves poetry, so she wrote several poems and shared them with the Earth Charter network. During the pandemic she hosted a poetry event online together with another young leader from France. They invited women and girls to share their poems on climate change through an Earth Charter lens.

“The course changed me. Especially my confidence because before I was a shy girl. So now after taking the course and connecting with other people, especially the networking part, it made me more confident to take action.“

Furthermore, she is spreading the word about the Earth Charter with the Filipino community to make more people familiar with the Earth Charter principles and values. Khadeejah has co- facilitated the LSE course with some other young leaders. The co-facilitation experience allowed her to revisit the course topics and to connect with more people that apply the Earth Charter values to their daily lives.

“It was very inspiring for me to see how different people from different worlds are sharing the same mission. We are a like-minded community“

Khadeejah plans to remain engaged with the Earth Charter Young Leaders network in the future. She wants to facilitate more workshops about the Earth Charter in schools in Manila once the pandemic is over because she wants to pass on the knowledge and values the course has brought to her. Through the course, she realised that a sustainable world for her is not only a world without the threat of climate change but a peaceful, just world that everyone wants to live in. She remains hopeful that a shift to a global feeling of responsibility towards the Earth is possible with the Earth Charter and the Young Leaders spreading the word about its principles and values.

“The best thing about being an Earth Charter Young Leader is meeting and connecting with many like-minded people around the world. I haven’t met them in person, but I hope to in the near future, and we feel encouraged to do more of what we do because we know that we are not alone. We feel universally connected.”

Earth Charter and Us
by: Khadeejah bint Malik, September 2021

Two visionaries once met and talked about society.
“We stand at a critical moment in Earth’s history,
A time when humanity must choose its future.”
Where each community of life is a precious creature.

Gorbachev and Strong sparked an idea that changed the world,
In which, man should have already made it his duty and word.
Common global ethics leads to an Earth that is sustainable,
So why go beyond universal law and put Earth to crumble?

Visionaries gathered on twenty-ninth June.
With hope their collective views would bloom soon.
A sixteen principle document was binded,
When finally, the Earth Charter was founded.

It is a tool for society.
A sense of shared responsibility.
“We are one human family, and one Earth community,
with a common destiny.”

With the rise of human population,
Resources are in depletion,
Species are in extinction,
This is not anymore fiction.

“It is imperative that we… declare our responsibility…”
For life on Earth, decide to live with integrity.

“We must join together”
As if there’s no border.
“Let ours be a time remembered…”
And for each other,
Commit to our Earth Charter.