Last night I registered my 5 yr old girl for soccer. I registered her brother too, but for now let's just think about her. She started Kindergarten this past September. Five days a week, for half a day, she is at school, learning, playing, having a healthy snack,and doing a whole lot of other things with a classroom of other girls and boys. Where we live, school is not a get to do thing, it is a must do thing for all children, whether you do so in the public school system, at a private school or through homeschooling or another alternative learning program. School for our kids, for our girls, is simply a given in our lives.
This is not the case in a lot of other parts of our world. I know that you know this, but think for a minute about your own daughter at 5 or 6 years old and then, instead of sending her to school, think about sending her out to walk MILES every day to get clean water for your family. Think about arranging a marriage for your 11 or 13 year old daughter. Think about there being no time for school in your daughter's day because she is a bonded servant (fancy name for slave) for your rich neighbours. It's all rather unthinkable right?
And yet for many, MANY girls in our world, this is their reality. For millions of girls the world over, education is a privilege - often a hard fought one (think Malala) - not a right. Girls around the world face barriers to education that boys do not. Barriers such as early marriage, gender-based violence, domestic slavery and sex-trafficking. Removing these barriers not only means a better life for these girls, it means a safer and more prosperous world for all. And the solution to removing them is simple: educate girls.
Educated girls stand up for their rights, marry and have children later, educate their own children, and their families and communities thrive. Educating girls can break cycles of poverty in just one generation.
GirlRising is a global campaign for girls education. It is a documentary film, it's a movement, it's a powerful teaching tool and it's a call to action for policy makers and educators and change-makers and regular everyday people the world over. GirlRising's mission is to change the way the world values a girl. ALL girls.
The powerful Girl Rising documentary is a feature film about nine girls across the world demonstrating inspiring strength and spirit and who are all fighting in various ways for their voices to be heard, for their education and for a better life for all girls.
Join me and Girl Rising Edmonton on International Women's Day, Saturday, March 8th, 2014 for a special screening of this powerful documentary. Details and tickets can be found here.
For two of you, I have a t-shirt and 2 ticket combo prize to give away! Comment below and let me know what Girl Rising and educating girls means to you! Winners will be chosen at random on March 5th, 2014.
Rise up les filles!