370 Days.

On 14 April, 2014, approximately 270 girl were kidnapped from a school in Chibok, Nigera by the terrorist group Boko Haram. Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai penned a heartfelt letter to the girls…if only they could see it and know that there are people who are doing everything in their limited power to bring them home. From the Huffington Post:

On the eve of the first anniversary of Boko Haram’s abduction of nearly 300 schoolgirls in Nigeria, Malala Yousafzai has published an open letter to the kidnapped girls, offering them words of “solidarity, love and hope.” “Like you, I was a target of militants who did not want girls to go to school,” the 17-year-old Nobel Peace Prize winner wrote. Yousafzai was shot in the face by the Taliban in 2012 for championing the rights of girls to go to school in Pakistan. On April 14, 2014, Boko Haram abducted more than 270 girls from a school in Chibok, Nigeria. Soon after, more than 50 of them managed to escape, but it’s believed the others remain captive. Reports have emerged of the kidnapped girls being tortured, raped, forced to convert to Islam, and being married off to members of Boko Haram. In her letter, published on Monday, a day before the one-year mark since the mass abduction, Yousafzai criticized the Nigerian government and the international community for not doing “enough to help” the captured girls.

She is correct – not enough is being done, and I would like to know why. The missing Malaysian airliner still gets more press coverage than 200 living, breathing, suffering human beings.

The American hostages in Iran, back in 1979, were held for a total of 444 days – but they were adults. Yes, they were subjected to psychological trauma…there is no question about that. However, any women who were captured during that time were released fairly quickly, as were the non-white individuals – so the hostage-taking back than was a completely different situation than the ordeal that these young girls are being forced to endure.

I am going to do what newsman Walter Cronkite did back then: start counting the days until they are returned. It’s all I can do at the moment…keep the awareness and some small hope alive.

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