Michelle Obama Launches Global Girls Alliance On International Day Of The Girl
Former First Lady Michelle Obama just announced a new initiative to advance educational access for girls everywhere.
The program titled, Global Girls Alliance, “seeks to empower adolescent girls all around the world,” and will be housed under the Obama Foundation.
The Obama Foundation selectively launched the initiative on International Day of the Girl. The day is dedicated to highlighting the disparities girls face while providing empowerment and access. This year’s theme is “With Her: A Skilled Workforce.”
“I’m thrilled to announce the Obama Foundation’s launch of the Global Girls Alliance,” Obama said in a statement. “We want to lift up the grassroots leaders in communities all over the world who are clearing away the hurdles that too many girls face. Because the evidence is clear: educating girls isn’t just good for the girls, it’s good for all of us.”
Obama sat down with the Today Show on Thursday to talk about the program and its three prong approach: inspiring and connecting grassroots leaders, driving financial commitment using GoFundMe, and engaging girls in developed countries as champions of the cause. The program will support 1,500 girls-education groups all over the world.
“The stats show that when you educate a girl, you educate a family a community, a country. It makes no sense–that the strength of our families, that girls and women are not getting educated, that they’re not in school. So it absolutely makes sense for us. If we care about climate change, if we care about poverty, if we care about maternal child health, then we have to care about education,” she said.
Obama referenced the astonishing statistic, that 98 million girls are currently not attending school and the impact that has.
“Let’s just stop and think about that. Think about our daughters, will all their promise, with all that they have in them,” she said. “You know even now at this young age, that there is something there burning in them that is dying to get out. Well that is true for millions of girls around the country. And they are battling through misperceptions, violence, stigma, to get their way into a classroom. And many of them don’t have access to a classroom.”
Obama has deep ties to providing educational access for girls. During her tenure as First Lady she extensively travelled to promote awareness on the subject. In 2012, the Obama administration launched “Let Girls Learn,” a program that facilitated educational opportunities for girls in developing countries. In 2017, the program was dismantled by the Trump administration.
“Through Mrs. Obama’s passion for this issue, our aim is to drive global attention, awareness, and action—and generate commitments to help empower adolescent girls around the world, so that they can, in turn, support their families, communities, and countries,” said Obama Foundation CEO David Simas in a released statement.