Thursday, October 11th is International Day of the Girl - a day to celebrate girls as influential changemakers.
Since our founding we've supported women's education. But 2014 was when we began focusing on girls. That is when 11-year-old Malala Yousafzai shocked the world by courageously standing up for girls' education in the face of danger from the Taliban. Her bravery and determination are a strong call for a day when girls are no longer marginalized by poverty, discrimination, violence or culture. Instead, they are empowered.
Malala is not the only one fighting for change. Organizations around the world are working to advance girls’ education, women’s rights and gender equality. When you think of your niece, daughter or granddaughter, you probably envision her growing up to be strong and capable (we all do!). That vision of a bright future relies on girls having equal access to resources, a safe learning environment, and a supportive network. You can help make it all happen.
One simple and meaningful way is by donating to, volunteering for, and sharing these inspiring initiatives with a girl in your life.
1. Girl Up
Founded by the United Nations Foundation in 2010, Girl Up is a powerful force in the movement toward gender equality. Supported by a large community of advocates, Girl Up works globally to create safe schools, increase girls' education opportunities, provide access to health services, and cultivate female leadership. Their programs support girls' rights in Ethiopia, Guatamala, India, Liberia, and in places where girls are most vulnerable. We love Girl Up champion Priyanka Chopra's powerful advocacy.
2. Girls on the Run
If you appreciate seeing girls actively engaged in a common goal, you'll love Girls on the Run. This joyful curriculum is inspiring girls to develop life skills, become self-confident, and pursue their dreams. With fun team-building activities, Girls on the Run nurtures girls' potential and creates a healthy emotional and physical outlet. Girls on the Run participants gain the strength and resilience to cope with life stress alongside caring coaches and dedicated volunteers. By the end, they are confident, ready, and excited for the 5K run!
Launched in Los Angeles in 2001, WriteGirl is an incredible nonprofit focused on empowering girls through creative writing and mentorship. With one-on-one mentoring from professional female writers, teen girls are given a powerful vehicle for expression while building career skills. Serving more than 500 girls annually, WriteGirl cultivates a supportive community where the power of each girl's voice is embraced and celebrated. Follow WriteGirl on Twitter and Facebook for updates on their exciting workshops and events in California.
4. She's the First
She's the First is a global organization supporting gender equality through community-based education and programming. By supporting girls who will be the first in their family to graduate high school, She's the First is transforming girls' potential to make change. Each STF Girls’ Group is made up of girls across Latin America, Eastern Africa, Western Africa, and Southeast Asia who face real obstacles to equality. Led by trained mentors, they are given access to leadership training and education in order to overcome hurdles and reach success. Support an STF Campus or start your own fundraiser for the cause!
5. She Should Run
For all the girls and adults out there who wonder when we'll have our first female president, you'll be thrilled to hear about She Should Run. She Should Run is a nonpartisan online platform dedicated to inspiring future women leaders in office. Through thoughtful guidance and insights, girls and women are given tools to break down limiting beliefs and uncover their own inner confidence to run. In the 'Incubator', girls and women are connected with a wonderful network of like-minded individuals who are passionate about creating change. Be sure to share this amazing resource with any girls in your life!
6. Girls Who Code
Thanks to rising women's tech events around the U.S. and woman-focused organizations, girls are becoming more and more exposed to careers in technology. Girls Who Code is a captivating after-school learning experience that introduces middle school and high school girls to computer science classes within a supportive sisterhood of peers. Girls from all backgrounds are encouraged to develop leadership skills, technical knowledge, and apply their problem-solving abilities to create a better world. If you dream of a day when women are equally recognized in technology , check out Girls Who Code.
7. Malala Fund
Founded by activist Malala Yousafzai, the Malala Fund is extending girls' access to secondary education through safe programming, leadership training, mentorship, and policy advocacy. The Malala Fund centers on empowering marginalized girls in Afghanistan, Brazil, India, Nigeria, Pakistan, Syria to learn and lead their own stories. Partnering with local activists, this nonprofit helps increase girls' rights and eliminate gender discrimination by recruiting female teachers and training young women to speak out. Follow the Malala Fund on Twitter and Facebook for inspiring updates.
8. Girls for a Change
Started in 2000 as an after-school program for girls of color, Girls for a Change has become a center for female innovators, STEAM learning, tutoring, and social and emotional wellness. Girls for a Change works to uplift the community by showing girls their strength and capabilities. Through fun physical and creative activities, each girl is empowered to overcome obstacles of prejudice and poverty to redefine her future. Get connected with this incredible sisterhood on Facebook!
We love each of these organizations for how they celebrate the limitless potential of girls to do good in the world. As a majority women-owned company with a social mission to empower women, we believe that equal opportunity for women and girls everywhere means a brighter future for all.
Which girls' organization or nonprofit inspires you to give back? Let us know in the comments below!
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