Just let this sink in.
In 47 out of 54 African countries, girls have a less than 50% chance of going to secondary school; average primary school completion rates for boys in sub-Saharan Africa stand at 56%, but only 46% for girls. This gaping inequality is a denial of girls’ rights and carries with it a serious social and economic cost.
- Educated women are more empowered and better able to demand their rights, as well as having healthier, more economically secure families.
- A girl who completes basic education is three times less likely to contract HIV.
- Children born to educated mothers are twice as likely to survive past the age of 5.
- A 1% increase in the number of women with secondary education can increase annual per capita economic growth by 0.3%.
[Taken from Make It Right: Ending the Crisis in Girls Education (A report by the Global Campaign for Education and RESULTS Educational Fund)].
In honor of International Women’s Day this weekend, we want to celebrate our girls. Sixteen intelligent young women are apart of the GLOBAL Scholars program and we hope that number continues to increase exponentially. With access to school, mentoring, and programs tailored towards women, we know that our girls will thrive. They will be empowered, healthy, and less likely to become married or pregnant. They will contribute positively to their school communities, home communities, country, and world.
In home visits and assessments, we are also able to get to know the women our students have learned from. Many of our total orphans are being cared for by strong women: grandmother’s, sisters, aunties, or friends who work tirelessly to provide what they can. Some of our single mother’s are heads of their village loan program or are working each and every day to provide a better future for their child. It really is a beautiful struggle and we could not be more proud of their dedication.
Our young women are such a wonderful blessing to us here in Gulu and inspire us daily as they work tirelessly towards a bright future. Some are from near and others have come to us from far (Arua, Adjumani, Pabbo, Amuru, Bobi and Kole). But regardless of their backgrounds, health status, and heartbreak, they have big dreams to become teachers, nurses, doctors, lawyers, Members of Parliament, journalists, accountants, and lawyers and contribute positively to their society. And we know they can do it.
These young women are amazing. And they deserve everything good in this world. We will keep working harder and harder and travel deeper and deeper into the villages until more students are reached.
As we continue to work tirelessly to research and tailor programs that will most benefit our students in Uganda, we hope that you will join in.
Much love from Gulu.
And Happy International Women’s Day to all of the amazing women of this world.