THE man behind a popular Facebook page in memory of Shafilea Ahmed is hoping a law firm in the town will support him establishing a scholarship for a Warrington pupil studying law.
The Great Sankey teenager, who had always dreamed of being a lawyer, was killed by her parents in 2003 when she was aged 17 for wanting to live a western lifestyle.
Alex Jones, who set up the online group and now works for forced marriage charity ‘It’s my right’, believes the funding would provide the perfect legacy.
The 26-year-old, who lives near Cardiff but was touched by Shafilea’s story after seeing it on the news several years ago, added: “We’re hoping a law firm can invest in this idea as Shafilea's own dream was to do law and giving someone the opportunity from the same community who can then perhaps make a difference would be a fantastic legacy.”
The 26-year-old, who describes the group as being ‘dedicated to education and empowerment’, claims it has also provided comfort for Shafilea’s sister Alesha and doubled its number of members following the murder trial in 2012.
He added: “We delivered a pack of posters to a youth group in Warrington recently and it’s been amazing the number of people from Warrington and across the UK who have got in touch.
“We’re trying to get more schools and universities involved and putting up our posters to spread the key messages about forced marriage.
“Silence is the biggest barrier and all of us have a voice.
“Children shouldn’t be going missing from school due to forced marriage.
“JFK said a child miseducated is a child lost and that’s the case here when children don’t know their rights.
“So many people are unaware of the help available and it’s really important for us to keep Shafilea’s name alive.”
Search for the Shafilea Ahmed Memorial Group on Facebook or to support the work of the charity visit justgiving.com/local/project/ShafileaAhmed.