Worldwide, almost 90% of schools were closed for some period of time in 2020 due to Covid-19 safer at home measures. According to the UN Secretary-General, we are at a serious risk of rolling back the advances that have been made in gender equality over the past decade. We know that, typically, when crises occur and schools are closed, girls in vulnerable communities have a much higher risk of not returning to school than boys. Additionally, amongst girls, gender-based violence rates go up, early child marriage increases and teenage pregnancy skyrockets.
Global G.L.O.W’s work in 23 countries around the world has given us a first-hand view at how girls are being uniquely affected across the globe due to Covid-19. For our team, the overwhelming reaction to this first-hand view is simple- we must find a way to support as many girls as possible. We know that our mentorship model and programs provide an important safeguard for girls- and that supporting as many girls as possible has never been more vital.
That’s why we are so excited to report that in January 2021 we will be growing the number of girls in our three programs by 31%! In January 2021 over 11,600 girls will be enrolled in our programs- a big jump from the 8,000 girls in 2020! Additionally, we are poised to expand to reach even more girls mid-year.
“The Healthy GLOW program was so timely this year- as teenage pregnancy is rising around Kenya the girls in our club learned about their bodies and boundaries so much better!” – Phoebe, Milele Center.
Incredibly, when we reached out to do strategic planning for 2021 with the question “Do you want to have more clubs for girls” the overwhelming response from the majority of our partners was “Yes.” Our 31% growth is a response to that call to action for our current club locations and we are so grateful for this strong response.
“I’d like to celebrate that our clubs in the Bronx have continued despite this pandemic. We’ve been able to maintain programs and come up with new ways to engage the girls, like virtual celebrations, even in the midst of this very challenging year.” – Michelle, Girls Mentor Girls
It doesn’t stop there. We have plans to expand even further, to new communities and countries throughout 2021! Our program is effective at providing a safeguard for girls and we must do all we can to provide that supportive environment to as many girls as possible and curb the long-term effects of Covid-19.
We hope you will join us to make this possible. It costs $200 per year to provide Global G.L.O.W’s supportive year-long mentorship based programming to one girl. Just $200 to curb the effects of Covid-19 in the life of a girl in a vulnerable community in Haiti or Kenya or right here in the United States.
Crystal Sprague is a fierce advocate for girls and women around the world. As the Executive Director of Global G.L.O.W., Crystal oversees the strategic direction and implementation of all programming for the organization.
Prior to joining Global G.L.O.W., Crystal spent over 16 years in fast-paced mission-led organizations (both for-profit and non-profit), developing and implementing social and business systems and helped lead teams to deliver results. She has a Social Work background, having obtained a Master’s in Social Work from the University of Texas at Arlington and spent 12 years working directly with young people and building programs both in the US and in an international relief context. Her previous experience as Executive Director of a trauma-informed non-profit in the Philippines that addressed the aftermath of the exploitation of girls is significant for the work of Global G.L.O.W.