Why Should We Pay Attention to Girls?

That’s the question being asked by The Girl Effect, a joint effort by a bunch of organizations, including the Nike and NoVo Foundations and the Population Council. They’ve made a cool video:

This isn’t kids content, and it’s not explicitly green, but a) it speaks to a secondary goal of Heartwood USA – namely, our attempt to create female role models that are attractive for what they do rather than what they look like and b) poverty has a multiple impacts on the environment and alleviation is an important goal.

Here’s how the site frames the issue:

The Ripple Effect

• When a girl in the developing world receives seven or more years of education, she marries four years later and has 2.2
fewer children.
(United Nations Population Fund, State of World Population 1990.)
• An extra year of primary school boosts girls’ eventual wages by 10 to 20 percent. An extra year of secondary school:
15 to 25 percent.
(George Psacharopoulos and Harry Anthony Patrinos, “Returns to Investment in Education: A Further Update,” Policy Research Working Paper 2881
[Washington, D.C.: World Bank, 2002].)
• Research in developing countries has shown a consistent relationship between better infant and child health and higher levels
of schooling among mothers.
(George T. Bicego and J. Ties Boerma, “Maternal Education and Child Survival: A Comparative Study of Survey Data from 17 Countries,” Social Science
and Medicine 36 (9) [May 1993]: 1207–27.)
• When women and girls earn income, they reinvest 90 percent of it into their families, as compared to only 30 to 40 percent for
a man.
(Phil Borges, with foreword by Madeleine Albright, Women Empowered: Inspiring Change in the Emerging World [New York: Rizzoli, 2007], 13.)

via Britt Bravo and David Gatenby.

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