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Girls Education Decreases for the First Time in 10 Years

A shocking worldwide increase of girls currently out of education has gone from 130.3 million to 130.9 million since 2015. This heartbreaking statistic comes from The ONE Campaign, who reports on Unesco data collected from 122 countries. This is the first time in 10 years that this has occurred and it is being described as a “global crisis, which perpetuates poverty.”

President and CEO of The ONE Campaign Gayle Smith said, “Over 130 million girls are still out of school – that’s over 130 million potential engineers, entrepreneurs, teachers and politicians whose leadership the world is missing out on.”

The ONE Campaign informs us that this is happening to mostly poor countries that cannot afford to give their children an education. These countries include some of the world’s poorest places with South Sudan, the Central African Republic, and Niger as the top three.

Even if a family could manage to afford school, boys are more likely to be actually sent to school. This does not even mention the wars that happen in these poor countries, which make getting an education dangerous and a last priority for families.

The Independent reports that, “In addition, in some areas there are cultural barriers to women getting a good education such as in Niger which has the highest proportion of girls under 18 who are married – 76 percent of all girls in the country in 2016, according to Unicef.”

Another factor to consider is that “across countries in Africa today millions of girls didn’t get to go to school, or walked long distances in dangerous conditions to get there, or sat in a classroom without a teacher or textbooks. This is not just about getting more girls into school, it’s about the women they grow up to be: educated, empowered and employed.”

Malala Yousafzai is an incredible example for young girls struggling to reach education. Her demonstration of bravery and perseverance points to how important education is. Malala has a fund to help girls get a secondary education; if you would like to donate, click here.

If you don’t know who Malala is, she is a young girl who was “famously shot by the Islamist militants in the Swat Valley in neighboring Pakistan in 2012 for campaigning for girls to have the right to go to school without fear.”

Girl’s education creates jobs, a better economy, stable communities, healthier families, and so many other amazing contributions. Eliminating education for women is one of the key ingredients to oppression. It seems we are taking steps backwards when we have come so far in women’s advancements across the globe. If you would like to help end this epidemic, click here to get involved in the ONE Campaign.

Featured Image by Jeff Peterson on Flickr

Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0)

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