The 11th of October is the United Nations’ “Day of the Girl”, with this year focusing building “A Skilled Girlforce”. 600 million adolescent girls will enter the workforce in the next decade and more than 90% of those living in developing countries will work in the informal sector, where low or no pay, abuse and exploitation are common. Today marks the start of an entire year of effort to expand learning opportunities and calls on the global community to help all girls to transition into the world of work.
Azoomee was founded by parents of three young girls so we have some understanding of the damage gender stereotypes can have on aspirations and opportunities. These girls benefit from seeing their mum working everyday a traditionally male-dominated field. Without role models like this, and with the systemic limitations that girls face around the world such as the expectation that girls don’t need to be in school or practices that alienate girls when they are menstruating, they still face huge barriers. We are proud to join the UN and passionately believe that girls (and indeed all children) have a fundamental right to education.
There’s so much untapped potential in each and every girl: it is our responsibility to provide opportunities for development – especially in communities without access to resources or materials. Technology can be a vehicle for innovative teaching and learning that helps girls to build the self-confidence to put themselves forward for opportunities. At Azoomee, we want girls to fly in the face of the social habits and collective representations that can hold them back. The future of this world depends on girls having the freedom and intellectual development to chase their dreams.
Happily, there are many ways to help break down the barriers preventing girls from attaining skills. With this in mind, we wanted to share a few organisations (and amazing people) that are helping girls around the world:
- Gabby Edlin @doublebeewhy is the founder of Bloody Good Period. @bloodygoodperiod provide period supplies to asylum seekers, refugees and those who can’t afford them.
- Amika George @AmikaGeorge campaigns to end period poverty for schoolgirls from low-income families with her https://www.freeperiods.org/ and raises awareness on Twitter with the hashtag #FreePeriods.
- Coderdojo.com is a global network of free computer programming clubs for young people. You can become a volunteer at your local dojo or, if there isn’t a Coderdojo in your area, you can start one! STEMettes run events, panels, hackathons to ignite girls’ interest in STEM subjects across the UK. This year they’ve partnered with Monster Jobs to offer #MonsterConfidence in 6 locations across the UK and Germany.
All of these amazing initiatives are providing girls with opportunities to attain skills for employability and help them mature into amazing women. Check out the link below to find out more about this day and how you can help: http://www.un.org/en/events/girlchild/index.shtml