There are 6,775,235,700 people on the planet today. Approximately 600,000,000 of them are girls living in developing countries. Most of them will never receive an education, will be forced to marry at a young age, bear children before the age of 19, and never reach their full potential because…well, simply put, they never had a chance.
Here are some statistics:
1. Approximately 25% of girls in developing countries are not in school. That’s about 91,000,000 girls.
2. 1 out of 7 girls in developing countries marries before age 15, not by choice.
3. 1/4 to 1/2 of girls in developing countries become mothers before age 18, also not by choice.
4. 14 million girls between 15 and 19 will give birth this year alone. Many of those girls will not survive.
5. Girls who marry before age 18 are twice as likely to report being beaten, slapped, or threatened by their “husbands” as were girls who married later.
6. 75 percent of 15- to 24-year-olds living with HIV in Africa are female, mostly because they are uneducated, but also because they are forced to sell their bodies to make money for their families.
These are just some of the numbers that quantify the serious worldwide situation facing young women today.
The Girl Effect is working to change the course of the future for adolescent girls and reduce the inherent gender inequality that is found in so many cultures around the world.
There are 600,000,000 possibilities for greatness out there. All it takes is one chance. See what you can do to help.