Friday, October 11, 2013

Day of the Girl

In case you didn't know, October 11th is International Day of the Girl Child. What is that, you ask? It's a day set aside by the United Nations to recognize girls' rights and the challenges girls face around the world. Today, people around the world are talking about the theme,"Innovating for Girls' Education".

From my time in Liberia, I have seen first-hand the challenges that girls face. Unimaginable things. Unfair things. Girls who desperately want to go to school. Women who are survivors of abuse and rape. Mothers who have beaten the odds and survived the birth of her children. Teens who so badly want to make a difference in their community and country. And yet, I've met so many young girls and women who are warriors--the strongest women I know! These girls are my heroes!

Liberia is full of beautiful, strong heroes, but there are still thousands and thousands of girls in Liberia (and millions worldwide) who continue to be trapped in the vicious cycle of living in a place where being born a female isn't a good thing. Take a look at a few statistics from Liberia:

It's because of girls like the ones above that fuel my passion to continue the work in Liberia! Jogma, in the middle, is one of my true heroes! She was a straight-A student who looked forward to going to college. In 11th grade, she found herself pregnant and kicked out of school because of it. She had her precious baby boy, Joshua, after four days of labor and started school less than 2 months after giving birth. She just completed her senior year and is enrolled in a nursing program at a local Bible college. Jogma wants to help herself and her family by continuing her education, but she dreams of helping her fellow Liberians as a nurse. She has also been a huge help and encouragement in helping my dreams come true in Liberia! Jogma is already planning on being heavily involved in the community center and I cannot wait to spend my days with her, teaching young girls how to sew and bake with plenty of laughter!

Thank you for your continued prayers and support during this transition and new chapter! I hope that you will continue in this journey with me--let's do it for the girls!

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