Educate Girls and Change the World

There is no tool for development more effective than the education of girls.
Kofi Annan, former UN Secretary General

I can’t say it better than that – or this –

12 comments on “Educate Girls and Change the World

  1. suitablefish says:

    both heartbreaking and inspiring. thank you for this post.

  2. […] Educate Girls and Change the World « creatingreciprocity. […]

  3. nrhatch says:

    Excellent video. We’ve support “foster” children in Ecuador and Sri Lanka . . . always GIRLS. While they were in school.

  4. granbee says:

    Who said,”Teach (Win over?) the mothers and you teach the nation”? SO very, very, true! Thank you so much for posting this message here!

  5. Fantastic post Trish. Thank you! Btw I waved as I passed eastwards over your city in a plane around 6am your time this morning. I could see on the route map that we were almost dead overhead 🙂 Best for the New Year and keep up the good work. Perhaps your next post should be what the young women I mentor tell me: ‘good boys are hard to find’ aka male emotional literacy needs an educational effort too….Ed

    • If I’d known I’d have waved Ed! Have a lovely New Year yourself – I hope that you make progress with your important work on the neurological basis of conflict and with everything else close to your heart. That’s a very good point about male emotional literacy – definitely needs an overhaul – but it’s a complex issue – often young men are required to continue doing the man thing and just add a female sensibility to it – a sort of a pick ‘n’ mix – there used to be a Gillette ad that said it all – tall, strong and handsome young successful business man in designer suit who is kind to old people and babies – I think these times for men are what the sixties were for women – confusing! Those young women control half the conceptual framework of our societies so they may well have more influence than they think – maybe that fact might cheer them up!

      • Trish, yes well I guess I was fortunate to have a very strong mother to balance my argumentative father: never left me in any doubt of the equality of the sexes, and also that it was just fine to have feelings. Well the Welsh never doubted it. And I guess I know many formidable women to! I sometimes wonder though if it is hormonal, the guy insensitivity thing. Also the lack of follow up. I have many good guy friends but they are almost entirely incapable of actually calling up for a chat more than once a year. Whereas my women friends think that is what life is for as I do…. What’s up with that? It’s not like guys look very fulfilled, and guys’ mid life crises are so boringly predictable: changing partners instead of themselves and finding there they still are…. 🙂 Though funnily enough some of my gay women friends find the role divisions reappear….ho hum.

  6. Women, in general, understand that the fabric of life is composed of these connections and that they have to be maintained as well as created – and they are right. Maybe your work has taught you the same lesson?

    Men need to put that effort in if they want the results (and they generally do want the results!) – but women have their part to play as well – they need to stand up (something men are – as a group – better at doing). We all need to see each other as human beings first and foremost and then take it from there.

    It can be hard for women to stand up though as they are more physically vulnerable which brings me to a very serious question I am trying to fathom of late – why is rape seen as humiliating for the victim? In the developing world this is particularly the case for women where many women feel they have no option but to kill themselves after they are raped in order to restore the honour of their family. Which makes rape a very effective method for subjugating women on all levels. Here are my questions – why does it work like this? Surely we should only be ashamed of our actions (in which case the rapists should be ashamed, not the victims)? When women are shunned by society after being raped are they being shunned by the women as well as the men? If so – why do the women carry on these attitudes?

    Any ideas on what lies at the root of a conceptual framework that makes this a reality for millions of women?

    • Trish, I think the rape issue is a piece of male mental hegemony that makes it easy for them to cover up what they do. The idea of victim shame makes me sick, though interestingly they say that in the 1950s Israeli born Jews showed contempt for survivors of the Holocaust for not fighting their persecutors.

      I had some knowledge of a sexual harassment case, where the accused made it public. I thought that was wrong, but then I thought, my thinking that means I think being sexually harassed is something to be ashamed of, and something like what you say about rape. Denouncing sexual harassment, publicly if necessary, is no shame on the victim. We don’t show shame for having been burgled. Or is that too simplistic?

      But I can’t answer why women carry on the attitudes, especially why they don’t show solidarity with those being raped? In my mentoring, I do have some insight into what families often do to damage girl and young women’s self esteem and mothers are part of this process. This is especially the case in Indian families where sons are favoured, and of course there is huge gender selective abortion in India and China.

      On a lighter note, when I retired, my male boss made a nice speech about my achievements, and then one of my senior women colleagues got up, and said to my boss in front of the crowd, you forget to mention his relation to women. My boss looked flustered fearing some revelation. She went on to say: ‘He really likes women and we women in the Company really like the way he likes us and supports us. And he is our honorary sister.’ Made my day. 🙂

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