Promoting quality education for all.

Afghanistan’s Uphill Battle for Girls’ Education

by Devon O’Reilly, 

The theme of this year’s 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence campaign was ‘make education safe for all.’ Over the course of the 16 days, Women Thrive Alliance shared the work – campaigns, capacity building techniques, and achievements – of our Alliance members that work relentlessly on gender-based violence that restricts girls from getting an education. Unfortunately, in many instances, female genital mutilation, forced marriage, and rape were the common culprits preventing a girl from continuing her education. In the case of Afghanistan, however, a girl’s mere chance of being allowed any education at all was the baseline.

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Increasing our Focus on Girls’ Education

by Alan Bobbett, 

A few months ago I met a grandmother. 

That’s not so remarkable, until I tell you that she is only 25. 

No matter how you calculate the math and circumstances that result in a young lady becoming a grandmother at age 25, it is horrific.  There is no instant panacea that will make instances like this history.  In this particular case, I can point to a long civil war, with its attendant atrocities, as well as child marriage, poverty, and other factors as contributory, but I really started the story this way to make the point that in our drive for accurate statistics with which to make decisions, we must never lose sight of the fact that those statistics point to real people, with real stories, and with very real barriers to overcome. 

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Power Up!

I wasn’t a huge video game player as a kid but I definitely appreciated a good game of Mario Brothers or Duck Hunt (I am clearly showing my age here). When I was really doing well, I would get a bonus--a "power up" --something extra that would help me immediately or later in the game. Supporting women and girls in reaching their dreams is like one big power up for the world.

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My vision for girls’ education in Africa: Safety in Schools

by Fatty Al Ansar, 

When I think of girls’ education in Africa, I dream of a continent where women and men are treated equally. I long for a continent where women are equal contributors to society; a continent where girls receive the same opportunities as their male counterparts so they can tap into their inherent potential. I would love to see every single girl have access to a free, quality education in Africa. 

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On Civil Society and Girls Forced to Marry…

by Jill Christianson , 

This year’s United Nations Commission on the Status of Women (UNCSW59) marks the 20th anniversary of the landmark Beijing Platform for Action which laid out a roadmap for progress for girls and women worldwide. I’ve just returned from the United Nations where I was a part of the Education International delegation to the 59th UN Commission on the Status of Women (UNCS59). Our Education International delegation at the UN included 20 educators from 12 nations – we were present to advocate on behalf of women educators and girls in the USCSW59 and Beyond-2015 agenda.

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Getting Adolescent Girls Back in School—A Needs Assessment

By Sofia Mussa, Malwina Maslowska & Kelsey Dalrymple, 

“For her it was just the fees…she feels like if her parents had paid for the fees, she wouldn’t have even gotten pregnant. Because she really wanted to study and complete her course in the Polytechnic, and get herself something to do.”

This is a common experience faced by adolescent mothers in Kenya and South Africa. In Kenya alone, an estimated 13,000 girls leave school every year due to teenage pregnancy

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Not Just The New Fashion

by Dr. Denise Raquel Dunning, 

 ‘Fashion week’ just ended for the global development community, when thousands of international leaders convened in New York for the UN General Assembly (UNGA). Presidents, ministers, donors, UN leaders, and CEOs celebrated the newest designs in global development: stylish poverty reduction plans, glamorous partnerships to prioritize girls’ education, and beautiful spokespeople for the latest hot issues like climate change and child trafficking.

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