Mirabelle Morah

Mirabelle Ogochukwu Morah is the 19-year old founder of Blankpaperz, a literary platform for young African writers.

Growing up in Calabar, Nigeria, Mirabelle knew many girls who were victims of sexual abuse and had witnessed gender-based violence regularly in her community. While these horrible injustices went on, few people acknowledged them. Mirabelle saw the power of influential writers in her nation to inspire citizens to fight for equality and knew writing could be a tool to address the issues in her society. Mirabelle created Blank Paperz , an online platform for young writers to share their voices and advocate for social change. Since its inception, 100+ young people from more than 12 countries have been published on Blankpaperz, with 33, 000 online viewership.

With the strong belief that education is the way to improve society, Mirabelle has trained several other young people to use media for social change, and organized book giveaways for the public. Since coming to the United States with a leader scholarship awarded by the U.S. Department of State, Mirabelle has spoken on Creative Associates International’s panel in D.C. to discuss the role of Blankpaperz in peacemaking, and has become an Ashoka Robert Bosch Stiftung ChangemakerXchange Dakar Fellow.

Mirabelle plans to launch an online magazine by the end of the year to showcase art and literature from young Africans that encourage a better society, and is seeking additional partnerships so she can offer scholarships. With the support of the U.S. Consulate in Nigeria and change-makers in Calabar, she is organizing more writing workshops to encourage people to speak out about issues in their communities.

    Never has there been such weighty responsibility on the shoulders of young people. Never has there been the influence in the hands of young people like the influence they carry now. But for Africa to reap the dividends she has longed for, it is up to our generation to make sure that influence is channelled correctly and directed towards relevant issues that affect not only ourselves but generations after us. This can only be achieved if we come together as young people and begin to address the challenges before us as a continent.

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