“Dr. Shellie Hipsky is a true leader and inspiration for me. She is transforming lives all over the world. Through her initiative Global Sisterhood she has proved that if our hearts are open to collaboration, physical distance doesn’t matter and together we can change the world!”
Sister Zeph, Leader of Zephaniah Free Education Center
To raise the status of women through education and empowerment so they can have equal opportunities, rights, and authority in their lives.
Thousands of women are facing gender rights issues every day in Pakistan. Sister Zeph has been working tirelessly for many years for change.
This initiative was taken by a 13-year-old girl living in a slum area of rural Pakistan (Aroop Mor, Gujranwala, Pakistan) who had to face gender discrimination from her family and society. Her uncle tried to kill her, at the age of three, for being a girl, and then she had to face discrimination and physical violence in her school at thirteen. Therefore, she decided to leave the school and to make her own in 1997.
Sister Zeph founded this school in the courtyard of her home and not only taught herself and got two Master’s degrees as a private student, but she taught hundreds of other girls in the same courtyard for fourteen years.
She started doing a full-time job at the age of 15 to support her cause because education in her school is absolutely free, since day one, so she kept supporting her school all alone for fourteen years along with teaching at the school, teaching herself and working her job.
In 2014 she joined social media and won a global prize for her teaching and writing. With the prize money she built a small building for her school (now the skills center). Now at the Zephaniah Free Education Center there are 200 students who are getting twelve years of free education and annually 300 women learn skills like stitching, beautician work, physical fitness, self-defense techniques, science, art, IT education, English language, health education, finance management, blogging, career counseling, peace building and more. With help from organizations like Inspired Women Paying it Forward, Support Education Worldwide, The Global Sisterhood, Theresa Gattung Trust and many selfless people, Zephaniah has been able to take a large building on rent for the growing primary and secondary students. It was difficult to manage 285 students in one small building that is attached to Sister Zeph’s home.
Along with 13 teachers in the school they have had many collaborations with educators all over the planet that teach the girls an array of different subjects via Skype.
The Global Sisterhood Charity Partnership Story
Years ago, Sister Zeph and Dr. Shellie became connected through inspiring and empowering the women of the world. Their friendship grew and in 2016, when Sister Zeph explained how important the Christmas performance meant to her village and school, Dr. Shellie approached the board and the young girls were able to put on their Christmas festival in Pakistan thanks to the Global Sisterhood donation. In a land with child brides and honor killings, Sister Zeph’s free education center provides a voice, resources, and fun for these beautiful children!
Dr. Shellie wanted Sister Zeph to be able to learn from the EmpowerU Master Class’ inspiration, empowerment, balance, and abundance through the proven curriculum and to meet the amazing women leaders in her cohort. Sister Zeph was awarded the International Scholarship for the EmpowerU Master Class. She learned a great deal and utilized her learnings in the class setting from the young students to the future entrepreneurs and most importantly she began to value self-care more which is particularly important for a nonprofit leader.
At the Inspired Women – Pay It Forward meeting, Dr. Shellie proved that the Global Sisterhood needed the funds to support the amazing mission of Zephaniah Free Education. Sister Zeph created a video in Pakistan to be played in Pittsburgh at the meeting, and Dr. Shellie presented the case to the philanthropic women who pooled their funds and that evening, The Global Sisterhood was able to raise over $5,000 for Sister Zeph’s school!
The funds that were obtained from Inspired Women though the Global Sisterhood helped the Zephaniah Free Education Center to move from tattered tents in the blazing hot sun to a true brick and mortar school with everything from technology to chairs, healthy lunch meals, to teachers’ payroll. Sister Zeph and the school’s students were thrilled!
Sister Zeph had her United States representative for her school, Malee, come to the Global Gala and Mastermind. Malee was able to participate in the variety of events including when we Skyped in Sister Zeph and she received the Inspiring Lives International Award in Empowerment in the name of Sister Zeph. Funds that were earned from the Global Gala fundraiser were sent directly to Pakistan to help support their technology, air, and school safety needs.
Sister Zeph has joined Dr. Shellie on multiple media platforms including her video podcast, Inspiring Lives LIVE:
And page 51 in Inspiring Lives Magazine “Bringing Free Education to the Girls of Pakistan Against All Odds”: https://issuu.com/inspiringlivesmagazine/docs/ilm-8-spring-2018-onlineopt
Dr. Shellie Skyped in to speak with hundreds of women that Sister Zeph gathered for an International Woman’s Day. Keynoting to the women of Pakistan was a great joy for Dr. Shelli, leading and inspiring these women from afar.
Dr. Shellie has been interviewed in multiple media platforms including television, and she loves to spread the word about Sister Zeph and their Charity Partnership such as on Spotlight on Pittsburgh: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QEUr0ERTa00&t=156s
Sister Zeph and Dr. Shellie continue their incredible friendship and support for each other through the emotional rollercoaster of everything from how to lead during a global pandemic to reminding each other to find balance in giving back while being parents. Their relationship is a true testimony of the Global Sisterhood and will continue to shine a light on the good that is possible when women stand up for each other’s missions.