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Five Things Michelle Obama Has Done For Women

In honor of New York Minute’s 7th Birthday, we’re celebrating some of our biggest feminist inspirations! This week, we’re talking about the one and only: Michelle Obama.

 

Michelle Obama is a globally recognized name from her time as FLOTUS alongside her husband, Barack Obama. Over the course of eight years, she has championed women’s rights and advocated for healthy opportunities for children. Besides that, she is the only first lady in American history to hold two Ivy League degrees and she was nicknamed “the Closer” for her ability to get undecided voters to sign pledge cards.

 

Not only this, but she’s been an influence for women all over the world and lead the way in the feminist movement.

In today’s article, we’re listing five things that Michelle Obama has done for women.

 

  1. In March 2015, Obama started an initiative titled “Let Girls Learn,” to help the 62 million girls around the world who do not have access to a quality education. The organization promotes programs that reduce gender-based violence against children and educate young women on their rights. In an essay she wrote on the project, she said, “I see myself in these girls, I see my daughters in these girls, and I simply cannot walk away from them. And I plan to keep raising my voice on their behalf for the rest of my life…to keep urging world leaders to invest in their potential and create societies that truly value them as human beings…to keep reaching out to local leaders, families, and girls themselves to raise awareness about the power of sending girls to school.” In 2016, the Obama administration committed another 5 million dollars towards Let Girls Learn.
  2. When she spoke at the State Department Women of Courage Awards in 2009, she encouraged women to advocate for themselves and their values. She said, “The women we honor today teach us three very important lessons. One, that as women, we must stand up for ourselves. The second, as women, we must stand up for each other. And finally, as women, we must stand up for justice for all.”
  3. While in the White House, Obama hosted a dinner to support mentoring programs for young girls. During her speech she encouraged girls to break the glass ceiling. She said, “Once you see somebody on TV it looks like it’s easy, but the truth is we only know many of these women once they’ve become famous, once they’re in the news. Faith and love and hard work — that’s what got us through. You don’t need money or connections. The question is, do you let that fear stop you?”
  4. When she spoke at the “Power of an Educated Girl” panel, she encouraged girls to “Compete with the boys. Beat the boys.” She also gave dating advice to the young girls, telling them no boy was worth giving up their education.
  5. In a speech at the South African Young African Women Leaders Forum, she encouraged African women to take on the challenge of eliminating injustice. She said, “You can be the generation to ensure that women are no longer second-class citizens, that girls take their rightful places in our schools.  You can be the generation that stands up and says that violence against women in any form, in any place, including the home, especially the home. That isn’t just a women’s rights violation.  It’s a human rights violation. And it has no place in any society.”

Well said, Michelle. Well said

Featured Image by World Bank Photo Collection on Flickr.

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