The Undeniable Importance of Education for Women and Girls in 2020

All women who hold positions of power and influence today have had some sort of education. Here’s why education for women and girls is so important in 2020.

Girls and women face unique barriers when it comes to education around the world.

Social stigmas, cultural norms, poverty, and inequality are just a few. Yet the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child states that education is the legal right of all children and the right of all human beings. Girls make up 54% of the world’s unschooled children. Most of these children are from poor countries that are exposed to conflict and poverty. Five and a half million girls in Nigeria do not attend school. This makes it one of three countries with millions of girls unable to access education. Pakistan and Ethiopia being the other two.

Studies are showing over and over that education for women is a key factor in stability for any country.

Women’s Health and Safety

Lack of education for women places them at a higher risk of death, poverty, and exploitation.

The UNFPA describes education as a social vaccine against HIV and Aids in areas where there is no access to vaccinations. Girls who complete primary education are three times less likely to contract the disease according to The World Bank. In Burundi, East Africa 16,000 children die every year. A startling statistic from the UNGEI states that the children of educated women are twice as likely to survive past five years of age.

UNESCO found this same link between child mortality and the education of their mothers.

Another issue facing poor and uneducated women is their risk of human trafficking, an industry worth $32 billion annually. Women who are educated have a much higher chance of avoiding abuse and exploitation while trying to support themselves.

Economic Benefits of Education for Women

UNESCO’s Education for All Global Monitoring Report has shown that governments around the world are loosing $129 billion dollars annually due to a “learning crisis”. This equates to 10% of spending on primary education.

This crisis is largely due to poor quality of education because of many social, environmental and political factors. There is also a lack of teachers in countries like Central Africa where there is an estimated one teacher per eighty students.

Teachers are often not well-educated themselves or are not paid a wage that can support regular attendance to their teaching role. Advancements in online learning are already being used to help bridge this gap between students and teachers.

Online study is helping to remove the barriers that women face to access education. Facilities like UMA online have prioritized gender equality in education. They are actively involved in the government initiative to achieve Sustainable Development Goals.

Breaking the Family Cycle

Providing education for women and girls has a dramatic impact on family issues in developing countries. Child marriage is a real problem around the world, especially in poorly developed countries. One in three girls in third world countries are married before they are 18.

Older girls who are forced to marry as children are put at a higher risk of complications and death during childbirth in their teenage years.

Child marriage also restricts a girl’s opportunities and usually makes education impossible. Just one year of primary education can increase a women’s income by twenty percent later in life. When women are not educated and able to support themselves this cycle of abuse continues.

Keeping girls in school is one of the most effective ways to avoid child marriage. When girls have at least seven years of schooling they typically don’t marry until their late teens to early twenties.

Wrap Up

The world will be at a major disadvantage until women’s education is equal to men’s.

Economic and health benefits are not the only benefits that come from education for women. Self-esteem and mental health are important reasons alone to make sure education is available to women around the world.

Have a look around the rest of our website for more information on how women can change the world.

Thanks to Amelie

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