As we reach out to world leaders in support of the first of the 17 global goals – No Poverty – we all need to be aware of how deeply poverty affects women and girls. Musician and philanthropist Bono said in a recent article in Medium, “Poverty is sexist: it hits women and girls the hardest, which is doubly ironic, because investing in them is the best way to end poverty.”
The ONE Campaign brought together some of the world’s most influential women to ask world leaders to demand more action and follow-through in helping girls and women reach their full potential. Women like Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg, philanthropist Lauren Bush, actor and producer Rita Wilson and actor Danai Gurira co-signed along with many others a letter to Germany’s Chancellor Angela Merkel and Chairwoman of the African Union, Dr. Dlamini-Zuma.
Their letter reads, in part, ‘For the girl who can’t go to a decent primary or secondary school or access healthcare, or who is forced to marry while still a child; for the mothers…who aren’t allowed to decide when to have their next child…who can’t own or inherit the land she farms, nor open a bank account, own a phone, access electricity or the legal system…let’s make sure they all count.’
Realizing women’s rights helps deliver everyone’s rights. For International Day for the Eradication of Poverty this year, on October 17, join the call to world leaders to focus on lifting girls and women out of poverty. Empowering a woman has a ripple effect that extends to her family, her community, and the world.
Take Action Challenge
ONE Campaign has great ways we can do a little to spread the word about helping girls and women affected by poverty.
- “Poverty is sexist, and we won’t end it unless world leaders act now to help girls and women reach their full potential.” Sign this petition, already over 1 million strong.
- Sign up to receive advocacy alerts via text message with ONE’s Mobile Action Team (message and data rates may apply).
- Join the campaign by striking a pose, posting a picture, and using the hashtag #WithStrongGirls. Be sure to tag women whose strength inspires you, and include a link to ONE.org so your friends can also join.
- Watch and share the Strong Girl video. This song features 9 of Africa’s most talented artists, and is a call to action for leaders to empower women and girls.