More than 430 million people in India still live on less than $1 a day—the majority are rural and female. This picture is particularly grave for the estimated 100 million adolescent girls between the ages of 10 and 19 years who are often caught in a cycle of poor health and poverty.
Reach Global is currently developing new education for adolescent girls to equip them to make better decisions about their sexual and reproductive rights and health, including when to marry and when to have their first child. These two decisions have tremendous implications for girls’ health and livelihoods.
I look forward to communicating with you again when many community organizations across rural India have begun facilitating this education among groups of girls, and girls have begun acting on their newfound knowledge, negotiation skills and health practices.
In the meantime, I want to share with you that a photo of one girl we met in rural India is a finalist in Global Giving's Photo Contest. If this photo wins this contest, Reach Global will receive $1,000 and be highlighted on Global Giving's Home Page. So, the single best way you can support our work today is to vote for this photo here. It's that easy!
If you wish to provide additional support, as always your tax-deductible donation made online through Global Giving (see link below) or at Reach Global's website is quick, easy and safe.
Reach Global’s work continues at an exciting pace. Since 2007, we’ve equipped more than 1,310,732 adolescent girls and women in community-based savings groups (called self-help groups) with critical knowledge and skills about home-based health practices, livelihoods and money management.
These numbers reflect the importance we place on supporting many women, girls and their families. However, what reminds us most that this work is important are individual stories that bring the numbers to life, and exemplify the smart, important role each of us can play in the lives of others.
One special woman our education supports is Srimati Krisku, who lives with her husband and little daughter, Priya, in a rural village north of Kolkata (formerly Calcutta). Srimati gathered with the other women in her group to tell us about the impact malaria education has had on their lives. "There is an awakening for us,” Srimati said. “We never knew how malaria works. The program taught us a lot and we are grateful."
Since joining her group, Srimati has seen many changes in her life. “Now there are no problems in the house to manage, because of our self-help group,” Srimati said. “The group comes to help if I cannot work in the field. We build houses together. If there is a wedding, everyone helps. We can solve our problems peacefully.”
When Srimati is not working in the field with her husband, she buys and then sells vegetables at her village market. She has saved enough money to purchase a goat. However, she’s pleased to say she’s even prouder of another purchase she made: a bed net. Reach's Learning Conversations education taught her to treat the net with insecticide to protect her family from malaria. Malaria is widespread in rural areas such as Srimati’s village. In one nearby village, 40 people died of malaria in less than a year.
“I use the mosquito net to prevent malaria. I put the ‘medicine’ on the net. We saw the mosquitoes and flies die. We could sleep better and we are happy.”
We know that when a woman changes the practices in her household the entire family benefits. Girls, the next generation of mothers and entrepreneurs, absorb these practices and integrate them into their future households. This is the powerful multiplier effect of investing in girls and women.
As always, your tax-deductible donation made online through GlobalGiving (see link below) or at Reach Global's website is quick, easy and safe. Your support is vital to our continued support to women like Srimati.
P.S. You can follow us on twitter and facebook
Reach Global’s work continues at an exciting pace. Since 2007, we’ve equipped more than 1,290,726 adolescent girls and women in community-based savings groups (called self-help groups) with critical knowledge and skills about home-based health practices, livelihoods and money management.
Our work this year in India will focus, in particular, on empowering girls and women to make sound choices about their reproductive health. I’ve attached an infographic that highlights why family planning saves the lives of mothers and infants and, therefore why it's such an important area for all of us to support women and girls.
Your support of this work is vital. So, I invite you to consider making a recurring donation at a level that you feel is personally meaningful. We’re excited to announce that an anonymous donor will match a recurring donation made today. Whether a single or recurring donation, your tax-deductible gift made online through GlobalGiving (see link below) or at Reach Global's website is quick, easy and safe.
Thank you again for your support!
P.S. Follow us on twitter and facebook
Poor girls and their families throughout the developing world live lives of constant uncertainty. From frequent fever from malaria, to diarrhea and dehydration from water-borne diseases, to a poor farming season that leaves family members, especially girls, undernourished.
However, as 17-year-old Neelam Kumari in Jharkhand, India reminded us during a visit, participating in Reach's health and finance "Learning Games" education equips girls and young women like her with life saving and life changing knowledge and skills: “I'm now washing my hands properly” and "able to save something for the future.” Such changes in home-based health and money management practices can change a life of uncertainty to one of greater stability and prosperity.
Please help us to continue supporting girls and their families by donating to Reach Global during the Global Giving Girl Effect Challenge, which ends November 15. Donating a tax-deductable gift online now is quick, easy and safe. Donate here.
Please also take moment to share this message with your friends and colleagues so we can build a larger circle of supporters like you!
Since my last report to you, we’ve been busy identifying ways to strengthen our support to girls in India. We've also achieved an exciting milestone. Since launching our flagship program in India in January 2007, Reach has equipped more than 1,183,858 adolescent girls and women in community savings groups with life changing education.
Equipping women and girls with basic knowledge and skills about home-based health practices, livelihoods and family finance, enables them to take greater control over resources to protect their health, improve their families’ income, and manage money. When a woman changes the practices in her household the entire family benefits. Girls, the next generation of mothers and entrepreneurs, absorb these practices and integrate them into their future households. This is the powerful multiplier effect of investing in girls and women.
I know you share my belief that investing in adolescent girls and women is both the right thing to do and smart, and I invite you to support our work this Fall by making a donation that you feel is personally meaningful.
Thank you again!
P.S. Follow us on twitter and facebook
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