Education and the interplay with poverty and opportunity is a huge global issue. It is particularly an issue for young women worldwide where in many cultures across the world, their education is sidelined, identified as less important, opportunities are not available, or it is not feasible for the family to lose it’s caregivers. The infographic above sheds some light on this global issue, and can really put things into perspective. When you read that one in four women can not read this sentence….it’s hard not to consider how huge that impact is on the world.
UNICEF states “Girls’ education is both an intrinsic right and a critical lever to reaching other development objectives. Providing girls with an education helps break the cycle of poverty: educated women are less likely to marry early and against their will; less likely to die in childbirth; more likely to have healthy babies; and are more likely to send their children to school. When all children have access to a quality education rooted in human rights and gender equality, it creates a ripple effect of opportunity that influences generations to come.”
One major reason the gender disparity in education can occur is due to poverty and an emphasis placed on male education over female education. When funds are available, it is the young boys who are ensured their education over the women and girls. General conditions of schools also can contribute to this issue, where schools do not have and can not provide sanitary conditions for BOTH girls and boys. Young women in some countries can manage attending school for some time, but when they hit puberty and begin menstruation, they do not have the resources or the products available to them to make a long journey to school without sanitary conditions. This leads to young women and girls missing weeks of school per year due to a natural, biological process.
All of these perspectives cover the issues that girls and young women face across the world regarding poverty and education access, but it is also important for us to realize these girls also face social issues that are not in their favor including cultural norms that are not int heir favor, local legislation, gender attacks, violence against girls and women and more.