Little Sisters

 
 

Gender equity is both a basic human right & imperative for the future of our global community. The Little Sisters initiative operates in the developing world to level the playing field for girls, in hopes of creating an array of opportunities for the next generation of women. Our program aims to knock down barriers, cultivate environments of equity, & encourage all girls to be ambitious & dream big.

 
 
 

Girls can change the world.

 

Girls in the developing world face a vast variety of barriers -- simply for being born a girl. In rural, poverty stricken areas, most girls are not only deprived of the same opportunities as their male counterparts, but are also straddled with an array of burdens that no child should have to face.

Millions of girls are deprived of education each year. A number of factors contribute to this: long standing cultural stigmas, poverty, priority placed on a boy child and menstruation are a small sample of influences that may impede a girl's education.

Being kept out of school at an elementary age can be detrimental to a girl's development, and usually leads to a number of other situations that strip young girls of agency and opportunities. One is child marriage -- most girls in the developing world are married before the age of 18, though many are far younger, with child brides often wedded to men much older. Without the resources or  to plan her own family, child brides often become pregnant soon after marriage, and the complications of pregnancy and childbirth sometimes take a fatal toll. Complications associated with pregnancy remains the #2 cause of death for girls, ages 15 - 19, in the world.

Forcing girls into assuming adult responsibilities while children contributes enormously to the cyclical effects of poverty. Children born to young and unready mothers are far more likely to suffer child mortality, poor living conditions, and malnutrition.

Some girls may be sold into sex trafficking; girls make up 80% of sex trafficking victims worldwide, exposed to heinous degradation of both mind and body. Girls can become vulnerable to sexually transmitted diseases, composing the largest bracket of HIV/AIDS youth diagnoses, and are the most frequent victims of sexual assault.  

It is clear that the prevailing treatment of girls in the 21st century is a violation of basic human rights. Amounting research also indicates that countries suffer immensely due to gender gaps in education and culture; net losses of GDP accumulate each year, cyclical poverty persists, and child mortality rates remain higher than could be.

Girls are powerful. Imagine what could happen if we ensured that every girl stays in school, stays safe, and stays healthy. The possibilities are endless. Girls can be the force behind economic engines. Girls can be the answer to cyclical poverty. Girls can be the response to child mortality rates. Girls can lower the spread of HIV/AIDS. The possibilities are endless.

And so: as a global community, we must stay committed to the cause of girls -- girls, who are infinitely deserving of growing up into a generation of women for whom the sky is the limit.

 

62 mil.

girls worldwide have no access to education

1 in 3 

girls in the developing world are married before age 18 

 

2 in 3

child sex trafficking victims are girls

 

75%

OF GLOBAL YOUTH HIV/AIDS PATIENTS ARE GIRLS BETWEEN THE AGES OF 15 AND 24 

70%

of global absolute poverty is women

 

50%

OF GLOBAL SEXUAL ASSAULT VICTIMS ARE GIRLS UNDER THE AGE OF 15 

 

30 mil.

CHILDREN'S LIVES THAT WOULD BE SAVED IF ALL WOMEN HAD SECONDARY EDUCATION

$30 bil.

IN GLOBAL GDP LOSSES DUE TO GENDER GAPS IN EDUCATION

 
 
 
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We believe that our Little Sisters Initiative should help girls by responding directly to the problems that they face. So we tackle these issues, head-on, community by community. Currently operating in three countries, Little Sisters continues to expand in its focus regions. 

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Choti Bahana 

With a population of more than 1.2 billion and a geographic size spanning most of the South Asian subcontinent, India is the world's second most populous nation, the largest global democracy, and one of the fastest growing economies. India's long history stretches back to the ancient civilizations of the Indus River Valley, and it is the birthplace of four world religions (Hinduism, Buddhism, Sikhism, and Jainism). Having spent two centuries under British colonial rule, India became an independent country in 1947. "Choti bahana" translates to "little sister" in Hindi, one of its 22 officially recognized languages.

The Choti Bahana chapter operates in three states: BiharUttar Pradesh, and Odisha. Our efforts here include educational scholarships, sanitary incinerators, school and sports equipment, and personal supplies.

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Tinish lig 

Located in the Horn of Africa and home to nearly 100 million people, Ethiopia is the world's most populous landlocked nation, as as well as the second most populous country on the African continent. With an archaeological history dating back 3 million years, Ethiopia's culture is ancient. During the "Scramble for Africa," the infamous widespread European colonization of Africa, Ethiopia was the only country to defeat Western military powers and retain sovereignty. "Tinish lig" translates to "little sister" in Amharic, the country's primary working language, though up to 90 regional languages also exist.

The Tinish Lig chapter operates in and around the capital city of Addis Ababa. Our efforts here include personal supplies, particularly for daughters of day laborers that do not have sustained housing. 

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hermanita

With a population of 15.8 million, Guatemala is the most populated state in Central America. In ancient times, Guatemala was the core of the Mayan civilization. Spanish forces conquered the country beginning in the 16th century, and Guatemala became an independent state in 1821. Today, the influences of both Spanish and indigenous peoples fuse in Guatemala to form a distinctive cultural landscape. Additionally, Guatemala is home to abundant and unique ecosystems, making it biologically significant. "Hermanita" translates to "little sister" in Spanish, the country's official language.

The Hermanita chapter has operated in and around the capital city of Guatemala City. Our efforts here have included school and personal supplies. 

 
 

I want to help girls flourish!

 
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