Happy International Day of the Girl! This holiday, also occasionally called International Day of the Girl Child, has been celebrated worldwide since 1995.
At TO THE MARKET, it's important to us to honor this holiday in whatever ways we can. So much of what we do at TTM involves working toward a world where more women and girls can succeed. We are striving for a day when every woman has the opportunity to earn fair wages in a safe work environment, and where she has the chance to determine her own future as a result.
Here are just a few reasons to support girls' futures, today and every day...
Women in the workforce means growth for everyone.
According to the UN, nearly 25% of girls from ages 15-19 are not in school or employed. At the same time, only 10% of boys in that age range are in the same position. The World Economic Forum notes that when more women are in the workforce, productivity increases - and as a result wages for men and women can grow. The World Economic Forum also found that closing the workplace gender gap could increase a country's GDP by an average of 35%!
Increased female income makes for a safer world.
According to the UN, around 435 million women and girls currently take home less than $1.90 a day. At the same time, 1 in 3 women globally have experienced physical violence or sexual violence. While those two numbers are not directly inverse, few experts would disagree that when women have more economic autonomy, they are more likely to be able to escape domestic violence or other dangerous situations. When a woman has her own means of supporting herself and her family, she has more options to build a life where she is safe and in charge of her own decisions, rather than being economically dependent on dangerous household members or family members.
Female leadership benefits everyone.
When the Harvard Business Review examined profitable companies as part of a study, it was found that businesses with at least 30% of women in leadership positions see a 15% average increase in profits.
Supporting gender equality aligns with our human values.
Perhaps not surprisingly, most people want to live in a world where women and girls have equal opportunities for success. In a Pew Research Center survey of 34 countries, a median of 94% of respondents shared that they believed it's important for their women to have the same rights as men do. When we work together toward a world where young girls feel safe, secure, and empowered to dream, we're building the kind of society we'd all much prefer to live in. And that's a beautiful thing.
Each of us can honor today by taking the time to honor the girls in our lives. Encourage their dreams, let them know that you believe in them, and point them toward opportunities to learn. If you're feeling inspired to make a difference with your dollars, consider picking up a product you love from a woman-owned company. When we spread awareness and let each girl know how much she matters, we can all make a difference, one day at a time.