Guest Author - Andria Bobo
Education is a precious gift that enhances the quality of life and changes the course of human lives for good. For girls in developing countries, an education is especially priceless. It can equip them with the knowledge to lift themselves and their families out of poverty, empower them to make better health decisions for themselves and their children, and secure for them a bright and positive future. Unfortunately, there are obstacles that stand in the way of girls receiving an education. Here are some examples of these obstacles:
Sanitation: In some areas of the world, menstruating girls are unable to attend school. The supplies that they need simply are unavailable to them, or the latrines at the school are inadequate for their needs. Ensuring that girls have the supplies they need and access to proper latrines are necessary in solving this issue. While the latrine part isn’t necessarily a problem we ourselves can solve, we can assist in providing menstruation kits so girls can stay in school. There are different ways to help, including simply donating items or even making them ourselves.
Demands at home: In some cases, girls are expected to take care of much of the work at home alongside their mothers. This can keep some girls from attending school on a regular basis or at all. Balancing the duties of the home more evenly among all family members may in some cases alleviate this problem.
Expenses: School can be expensive and some families opt to send only their sons to school, because they feel that they are making a greater “investment” by sending boys to school rather than girls. This is a problem without an easy fix, but something we can do to help is donate to charities dedicated to sending girls to school.
Accessibility: Sometimes schools are too far away or are located in places that are difficult to get to. This is not a problem with an easy fix either; some schools will simply be difficult to get to. Ideally, more money and other resources would be available everywhere so that more schools would be built, enabling all girls to have easy access to school. We have the power to give to legitimate organizations that build schools in developing nations.
Not all of these obstacles have simple solutions. But we must call upon parents of girls (and boys) everywhere to find ways to send their kids to school and receive the education that will so greatly change their lives. Children are the leaders of tomorrow. Let’s prepare them by doing everything in our power to get them to school today.