For The World To Rise Against Inequality, We Must Work Together
What comes to your mind when we first talk about girls’ education? There are chances that you might get thoughts of activists who support the agendas of upskilling all females and pushing them into a lifestyle where they get equal treatment as their male counterparts. Or perhaps you can think of a girl you met randomly who was so eager to study but could not go to school due to some financial or personal problems. Both the scenarios in your mind are correct and common in today’s world but the disturbing fact that still arises is there are criteria by which girls of the underserved areas have to compromise when it comes to education, jobs, equal pay wage, and many more.
Dramatic progress has been achieved toward gender equity in basic education under the Millenium Development Goals. While more remains to be done, today’s challenges for improving girls’ education and opportunities have changed completely. Girls make up a major part of the total population around the globe and they even become the victims of rape, sexual violence, and many more. All these things restrict a girl’s future by comparing her to somebody else. So, before knowing how to solve the problems related to girls’ education, we must first understand all the reasons specifying the need for girls’ education.
Future Educated Generations
You must have heard a proverb saying “if you educate a boy, you educate one person but if you educate a girl, you educate a whole family!” It is true because educated females develop educated and healthy families. They make sure to help their kids in receiving a quality education. So, investing in a female’s education is equal to investing in many more future educated generations.
- Decrease Infant Mortality
Uneducated families have less or no knowledge about the healthy facts of growing a family so many times they go for abortion. Uneducated girls are at risk of contracting HIV or AIDS easily and then passing it on to generations to come. Primary education has the power to reduce the infant mortality rate. A global report shows that when a child is born to an uneducated woman in Africa then he/she is more likely to die before the age of 5. This is not just the case in Africa but in the whole world. So, this helps underserved girls get primary education and in turn, reduces the infant mortality rate.
Decreases Child Marriage
Early marriage leads to zero opportunities for a female to stand on her own and establish herself as a working independent professional. When the girls are married off before maturing then the result is that illiterate and young mothers build unhealthy and uneducated families without adequate knowledge. Education gives them a sense of understanding about their bodies and career so they decide appropriately when to marry and thus primary education reduces the child marriage rate as well.
Increased Involvement in Political Process
Educated women become strategic leaders. This includes their participation in political discussions, meetings, and decision-making which in turn helps to develop a more representative and effective government. This allows the females to stand strong and advocate for the causes that might stay unheard in their absence. It also helps the nation to understand things from a woman’s perspective who might have experienced some things herself.
These and many more are some of the valuable reasons for all of us to support girls’ education. But they cannot break all the stereotypes and patriarchal beliefs alone. For the world to stand strong we must suppress the rising inequality by understanding the importance of girls’ education and providing support for them,
Let us discuss the ways in which everyone can support girls’ education.
What Would It Take to Improve Girls’ Access To Education?
The first step? It is always supporting organizations that fight for girls’ and women’s education. Many people aim to bring a change but they are unheard because of the alone voice they raise. For a crisis that has existed for years, it is difficult to fight alone. Uniting with the ones who are known for advocating the cause for years presents a strong front and your objection does make a difference. So, if you wish to help the girls in underserved areas educate, you must support some of the non-profits. Many activists also protest and advocate for girls’ education for years. So, the crowd can unite with them in order to make their voice heard in unison. Physical, mental, and financial support is required to help cure the world from the problem of gender inequality.
The second step in achieving the goal of equality is upskilling the girls as well. Gaps exist in every society and they should be fulfilled now. A forthcoming report suggests that in 24 low-income countries, only 34% of girls in poor households complete primary education as compared to 71% of boys. This leads to income gaps in the future as these interventions reduce the opportunity cost of schooling for girls and they are not able to develop the skills required for facing the job market ahead.
So, in addition to increasing enrollment and attendance in schools, we also need to ensure that all the school-going girls could learn something skillful by building stronger systems with clear learning standards, good teachers, adequate resources, and a regulatory environment that emphasizes accountability. So, you as an individual should start doing this on your level. This will have positive impacts on self-confidence, satisfaction with job outcomes, and household food security.
Step three relates to the development of an environment encouraging investments in knowledge and creativity irrespective of their gender. This calls for innovative specific skills which will help people connect with ideas as well as risk management that facilitates innovation. When girls are compared to boys, they are again at a disadvantage of fewer opportunities and lower rates of entrepreneurship in many countries. If a girl wishes to do something innovative and new then she must get appropriate funds and support to help her keep going. Gender budgeting is another vicious tool in the fight to reduce inequality. A female should be trusted equally while investing some funds. It would encourage them to explore uncertain opportunities and take risks while generating something new.
The fourth and final step is to reduce the patriarchal mindset – despite the success made in valuing equal education for girls, the patriarchal mindset influences the choices of parents from backward societies in sending their girls to school. It is believed that the role of females in society is to be the backbone of a family and take care of the household chores and the needs of everyone in the family. So when there are resource-constrained settings, the priority of educating a girl child slips down in the minds and this leaves them with no opportunities further to educate themselves because once they attain a certain age, they are married off.
Multiple assessments prove that there is a need of advocating for families of the existing patriarchal beliefs and so educated and aware individuals need to stand up for this cause. There should be briefing sessions with the people of underserved areas regarding the importance of girls’ education and the benefits it will give in return.
So, while thinking about girls’ education there is nothing wrong in picturing upskilling girls and pushing them to live an equal life as all the males. But to help them achieve what they dream of we need to work more because what is being done is clearly not enough. Girls and young women entering the 21st-century job market will need education and job-oriented skills to survive smoothly. There cannot be “one size fits all” situations but we need to ensure as much as we can. Underserved girls in various parts of the world need your support at every step.
People have different preferences, different challenges, and aspire to achieve different things in life but by working together we are more likely to pull most of them out of their condition. Support Educate Girls, a non-profit working to advocate for girls’ education.
Join hands with us today and strengthen the programs we have launched on supporting girls’ education and understanding the benefits of educating a girl.