The entire premise of our work is founded on the truth that to educate a girl is to educate a family. Below are some of our favorite quotes, statistics, and stories demonstrating this truth.
“If you really want to change a culture, to empower women, improve basic hygiene and health care, and fight high rates of infant mortality, the answer is to educate girls.”
--Greg Mortenson, author of Three Cups of Tea and Stones into Schools
“What we are learning around the world is that if women are healthy and educated, their families will flourish. If women are free from violence, their families will flourish. If women have a chance to work and earn as full and equal partners in society, their families will flourish. And when families flourish, communities and nations do as well.”
--Secretary of State and former First Lady Hilary Clinton
In a speech to his fellow Ghanaians in the early 1900s, the visionary educator, Dr. J.E. Kwegyir Aggrey, declared, 'The surest way to keep a people down is to educate the men and neglect the women. If you educate a man you simply educate an individual, but if you educate a woman you educate a family.'"
Joy Phumaphi, World Bank vice president for human development and Danny Leipziger, World Bank vice president for poverty reduction, in the foreword of the report Girls' Education in the 21st Century: Gender Equality, Empowerment, and Economic Growth stated:
“Women’s economic empowerment is essential for economic development, growth, and poverty reduction—not only because of the income it generates, but also because it helps to break the vicious cycle of poverty."
Female literacy has been shown to have a positive effect on health because “educated women are more likely to be employed and to earn more than less-educated women” (Daniell & Mortensen, 2007, p. 278).
“(1) Formal education directly teaches health knowledge to mothers; (2) Literacy and numeracy skills acquired in school assist future mothers in diagnosing and treating child health problems; and (3) Exposure to modern society from formal schooling makes women more receptive to modern medical treatments” --Paul Glewwe, senior economist for The World Bank
“An extra year of girls’ education can reduce infant mortality by 5-10 percent” and “educated mothers are about 50 percent more likely to immunize their children than uneducated mothers are” (Herz & Sperling, 2004, p. 4).
"Documented benefits of female literacy include fewer children per mother, fewer children lost to disease, and a greater use of modern health care practices" (Spratt 1992).
“Strategic investment to improve quality of life through female education will have the greatest impact on maternal mortality reduction” (McAllister and Baskett 2006).
Some quotes from The World Bank:
"Children of mothers with 5 years of primary education are 40% more likely to life beyond age 5."
"When the proportion of women with secondary schooling doubles, the fertility rate is reduced from 5.3 to 3.9 children per woman. Providing girls with an extra year of schooling increases their wages by 10 to 20 percent. There is evidence of more productive farming methods attributable to increased female schooling, and a 43 percent decline in malnutrition."
"Educating women has a greater impact on children’s schooling than educating men. Young rural Ugandans with secondary schooling are three times less likely to be HIV positive. In India, women with formal schooling are more likely to resist violence. In Bangladesh educated women are three times more likely to participate in political meetings."
To see The World Bank's page on girls' education, click here.