Posted by: lrrp | July 13, 2013

Educate a Girl: Change the World

article_imageIt has been said that educating a girl is educating a whole village. Despite this,more than 60 million girls worldwide are being deprived of an education in impoverished nations and under-developedCountries in Asia and Africa, such as Afghanistan, Kenya, Pakistan and the Congo, which are some of the notorious regions that confine girls from tutelage.Poverty-stricken girls do not attend school due to many reasons, as they are often abducted for marriage and are also affected by AIDS/HIV menace forcing them to drop out of school and take leadership of the family. Edification is a fundamental factor for a female, as a girl needs to be educated to run a household successfully. Also, many girls with a great interest and potential in learning are unable to make a presence at school. Education of girls would result in a better economy. The benefits of societies with educated girls also include lower birth rates, better health, lower infant mortality and fewer teenage marriages and pregnancies.Fortunately, affluent beings like us can be the saviors of these desperate individuals by donating money to these impecunious girls,by sponsoring a child or even requesting the governments of the world to promote the education of girls. If we take the initiative to support this cause, the problemsconcerning uneducated girls will be wiped off the face of the Earth.

Most people would agree without any hesitation that a mother’s presence is vital towards the proper upbringing of a child. But what if the child’s mother was illiterate? This situation is very common, as there are 800 million adults who cannot read or write, and women account for two-thirds of this population! If a child’s mother was unable to read or write due to a lack of education, her children would not lead successful lives as they would be deprived of proper guidance.A girl who has completed her education is more likely to avoid violence and young marriage, and is also more likely to be literate, healthy and survive into adulthood, as are her children. Sometimes, a household would have financial issues, and the income of one individual wouldn’t suffice the family’s needs. But, if the mother can’t step up and work, due to her being uneducated, the family’s situation would be deplorable and would ultimately affect the lives of the whole household, community and nation.

There are millions of youth who show a great deal of interest and potential in school, but, since 60 million girls who show a passion for learning, are unable to attend school, many feel that this is a big injustice.Many of these children dream of becoming doctors and lawyers in the future, but since an education is a necessity to achieve these goals, these ambitions are out of reach for these forlorn children.An example of these girls who are passionate about school is fifteen years old Malala Yousafzai from Pakistan. When the terrorist group, the Taliban, recently passed an edict prohibiting girls from seeking an education, Malala started her campaign as a child rights activist, promoting the education of girls. Since she was causing immense controversy, the Taliban sent a gunman to mercilessly shoot Malala in the head. She survived this encounter with major injuries, but thankfully survived to continue her valiant efforts as she does so to this day from England where she was taken for treatment.Many human rights activists the world overhave proposed her name for the NOBEL PEACE PRIZE for her singular courage. Other chivalrous individual who supports the education of girls is twenty-two year old Shabana Basij Rasikh from Afghanistan. Born into a supportive family, Shabana was six years of age when the Taliban took over Afghanistan and passed a draconian law prohibiting girls from attending school. But courageous Shabana discreetly attended school, by dressing as a boy and hiding her books in grocery bags. If Shabana had been caught, she could have been punished by death. However, these efforts proved to be worthy as, lateron in her life, she would become part of the elite group of the few Afghani women who had earned a diploma, as she did so in Middlebury College. Today, Shabana is the founder of ‘SOLA’ (School Of Leadership, Afghanistan), which is the first boarding school for girls in Afghanistan. She continues to speak abroad about the plight of uneducated girls. Her voice should not be a lone voice.

Even though men are considered to be the main source of income for a family, many households have a female as the breadwinner. Lawrence Summers, the former Chief Economist of the World Bank stated; “Educating girls yields a higher rate of return than any other investment in the developing world.” In the United States, women make up 47% of the working labor force, proving that women can make a big contribution to the economy. Unfortunately, girls who do not have access to school cannot be part of the economy. It is a necessity for a commanding economy to have many educated individuals, and 60 million uneducated individuals will not help this cause.Educated women reinvest their income back into their family, community and country at a higher rate, and are more likely to understand their rights and be a force for change. Also, an uneducated mother would have uneducated children, resulting in generations of uneducated population, which would have adrastic deteriorating effect on the economy. Studies have proven that closing the gender gap would boost a country’s GDP by 16%. This fact proves that girls can make a big difference towards our society.

Every human being in the world deserves to be treated equally. But, the exclusion of girls defeats the purpose of this right, and more fortunate individuals like us should step up and make a change. Policy makers, planners, researchers, managers, entrepreneurs and other development specialists should initiate in making a difference for this cause. We should be inspired by the courage and determination of these young females, who, even on the darker days, still persevere to improve their lives. If the citizens of the world unite, these girls, will have an education, be empowered and will achieve success in their lives.

 


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