CELEBRATING GIRLS TODAY AND EVERY DAY

INTERNATIONAL DAY OF THE GIRL CHILD

In 2011, the United Nations General Assembly declared October 11 as the International Day of the Girl Child, distinctly recognizing girls’ rights and the unique challenges girls face around the world (International Day of the Boy Child is May 16). The goal of International Day of the Girl is to support opportunities for girls and increase awareness around gender inequality faced by girls worldwide. The celebration also demonstrates that girls and young women are increasingly a priority in policy and programming and that supporting their growth journey helps to ensure the future of our global economy.

When I started TO THE MARKET, supporting women’s access to dignified work was paramount. When women become a meaningful part of the economic system, girls are secondary beneficiaries, enjoying increased access to education and healthcare. By empowering women across TO THE MARKET’s value chain — from the women on our production lines, to the buyers at our retail stores, to the investors in our cap table— we are benefiting the girls they support.

FORTÉ FOUNDATION – MORE WOMEN LEADING

When I learned about the non-profit organization Forté Foundation, I was inspired by their mantra of more women leading.

As an official Forté Foundation Ambassador, I am part of a community of over 100,000 motivated and inspiring women who are changing the balance of power in the workplace. Forté opens doors for women, allowing them to reimagine what they can achieve in business. This powerful alliance of talented women, influential companies, leading undergraduate and business schools, and pioneering donors empowers women to change their career trajectories, their earning power, and their lives.

Through business education, role models, professional networks, and leadership training, Forté empowers women to claim their share of power, respect, income, and impact. Every time we launch another woman into a business career, we change the balance of power in the workplace, paving new paths for girls and young women.

IT’S PERSONAL TO ME

As a female founder, I have faced firsthand the challenges involved in starting a global business and raising capital. Only a tiny percentage of venture funding continues to go to female founders. Yet, when companies have at least one female founder, they outperform all-male founded teams by an average of 63%. The results are staggering, but there’s still so much progress to be made.

I am thrilled to be a part of Forté and other organizations that are helping to change the climate in the U.S. and around the world. By mentoring others and sharing my experience as a business school graduate, author, founder, and CEO, I am trying to increase the chance that more women can raise funding and lead successful businesses.

Today as we celebrate the International Day of the Girl Child, I am encouraged by the changes I am seeing for women in the world of work. Girls face unique challenges and I am excited to do everything I can to help girls and women feel empowered and fulfilled. By supporting women in business today, we are setting up girls to become tomorrow’s empowered workers–as mothers, entrepreneurs, and business and political leaders.