Pakistani teenage activist Malala Yousafzai is to receive an award for moral courage.

The 16-year-old will be honoured with the Anne Frank Award at a ceremony in London on Thursday.

She came to public attention in 2012 when she was shot in the head by a Taliban gunman while on her way to school.

Anne Frank
Anne Frank Wikimedia Commons

Speaking about the young activist, co-founder and executive director of the Anne Frank Trust UK, Gillian Walnes said: "Malala is one of the most remarkable people we have encountered, both as a teenager and an educator, and is as inspirational a figure as Anne Frank."

Yousafzai is studying for her A-levels and cannot attend the event. Her father, Ziauddin Yousafzai, who is a UN adviser on education, will accept the award on her behalf.

Naomie Harris, who recently starred as Winnie Mandela in the film "Mandela, Long Walk to Freedom" will present the award.

Malala Yousafzai was targeted by the Taliban because of her campaigning work for the education of girl's in Pakistan.

The assassination attempt sparked a national and international outpouring of support for Yousafzai.

She was treated in a Pakistani hospital before being transferred to the UK for surgery and rehabilitation at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham.

Since her recovery she has been feted by Prime minister's and Presidents and met the Queen, who she presented with a copy of her book.

United Nations Special Envoy for Global Education Gordon Brown launched a UN petition in Yousafzai's name, using the slogan "I am Malala" and demanding that all children worldwide be in school by the end of 2015 – a petition which helped lead to the ratification of Pakistan's first Right to Education Bill.

In the 29 April 2013 issue of Time magazine, Yousafzai was featured on the magazine's front cover and was named one of "The 100 Most Influential People in the World."

She was last year considered a contender for the Nobel Peace Prize and although Yousafzai was widely expected to win the prestigious prize, it was awarded to the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons.

The teenager was however, the youngest person at age 16 and the first girl to be nominated for the award.

Malala Yousafzai with Obama & family
President Barack Obama, First Lady Michelle Obama, and their daughter Malia meet with Malala Yousafzai, the young Pakistani schoolgirl who was shot in the head by the Taliban a year ago, in the Oval Office, Oct. 11, 2013 Flickr/The White House

On 12 July 2013, her 16th birthday, she spoke at the UN to call for worldwide access to education. The UN dubbed the event "Malala Day".

Addressing the delegates she said: "The terrorists thought they would change my aims and stop my ambitions, but nothing changed in my life except this: weakness, fear and hopelessness died.

"Strength, power and courage was born ... I am not against anyone, neither am I here to speak in terms of personal revenge against the Taliban or any other terrorist group.

"I'm here to speak up for the right of education for every child. I want education for the sons and daughters of the Taliban and all terrorists and extremists."

Ban Ki-moon, who spoke at the session, described her as "our hero".

She has since written a memoir about her experiences since the fateful attack by the Taliban, entitled I Am Malala.'