What stands in the way of girls receiving an education?

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What stands in the way of girls receiving an education?

Post by Tambu Jamila on Tue Feb 09, 2016 12:24 am

Gender parity in countries of Sub-Saharan Africa are worse than all others. An estimated 31 million girls of primary school age and 32 million girls of lower secondary school age are uneducated and not attending school (UNICEF). Despite the supply-side constraints in most African countries, negative societal or cultural norms act as additional barriers for girls receiving an education. In the eyes of many African families, girls are destined to become housewives as their contributions to the household are more valued than their desire to receive an education. Thus, women are bred only to serve a purpose in maintaining the household and nothing else. Increasingly, adolescent girls also face economic and social demands that further disrupt their education, spanning from household obligations and child labour to child marriage, gender-based violence and female genital cutting/mutilation. Recent estimates show that one-third of girls in the developing world are married before age 18, and one-third of women in the developing world give birth before age 20. If all girls had secondary education in sub-Saharan Africa and South and West Asia, child marriage would fall by 64 per cent, from almost 2.9 million to just over 1 million (UNICEF). Inadequate or discriminatory legislation and policies often inhibit girls’ equal access to quality education. In countries such as Afghanistan and Pakistan, formal or written threats to close girls’ schools or end classes for girls have fueled gender motivated attacks on schools.  Evil or Very Mad



Last edited by Dendy Standish on Wed Feb 10, 2016 6:57 am; edited 4 times in total

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Culture and its impacts

Post by Ashanti Boipelo on Tue Feb 09, 2016 12:44 am

Girl's education is both an intrinsic right and a critical lever to reaching other development objectives. Education is a source of intervention to escape from the poverty cycle: educated women are less likely to marry early and against their will; less likely to die in childbirth; more likely to have healthy babies; and are more likely to send their children to school. When all children have access to a quality education rooted in human rights and gender equality, it creates a ripple effect of opportunity that influences generations to come. Countries should modernise and develop along with it's people and culture. A culture that stands to promote gender inequality no longer and should have never existed since the world is now matured and more accepting. Don't let the pressures of cultural norms hold you back.

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Poverty cycle (trap) obstruction

Post by Bruno Smith on Tue Feb 09, 2016 8:27 am

This is not all because of cultural norms. In these past few decades, such countries has been struggling economically and the development industry has focused mainly on the question of absolute poverty. We are able to witness the persistence of absolute poverty in the world when we compare the share of the world's income and wealth that goes to its richest citizens with the share that goes to its poorest. We are not to completely blame the cultures that currently exists today in these countries, and girls are not the only ones who are discriminated against. These issues are faced by both genders in economically low developed countries. The report notes that 48% of African children do not finish primary school, which are divided evenly by both genders. Many Sub-Saharan African countries are fastened in the poverty cycle with very low income. Individuals rely on the availability of basic needs in order to survive, and with incomes at approximately $762 USD a year they cannot risk investing in education for their children as they may never see graduation. affraid

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Keep in mind that males are also impacted...

Post by Tapiwa Michélee on Tue Feb 09, 2016 8:58 am

Why should we sacrifice our culture for the sake of a better economy in the nation!? I am a male from Gambia and I strongly disagree, without the presence of our culture we lose the sense of belonging and individuality. We will struggle to find people similar to us and as a result, the feeling of isolation and solitariness will start to creep-in. Our traditional African culture has lived for centuries and it has shaped us to be become who we are now as a person. We are not to change the culture of a nation so that it can merge alongside other cultures. The culture we were brought up by fed us our unique features and identity. Cultures across the world are different in every way and if the world is to conform into one single culture it would be difficult for one to stand-out from the rest. It is painful to see my female counterparts to suffer from such discriminations, however, this is fate and we must learn to accept it. In many occasions, African families struggle to provide their children education, whether it was for boys or girls, due to financial issues. Although, if they are able to they would favour the boys over the girls. This may seem wrong and unfair but this is how our culture taught us. It is great to see active movements such as UNICEF to show willingness to help the female population in receiving an education, yet, we cannot blame our culture for these "wrong doings". Yes, it might seem as though it is a form of gender inequality, however, many individuals has accepted this. Infact, receiving an education would mean that there are pressures from families to earn a decent amount of income in order to help the family members survive. I believe this levels out everything, nevertheless, I am aware that this argument is not for everyone.

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Why should culture be modified in order to "fit-in" the modernised world?

Post by Solomon Vandy on Tue Feb 09, 2016 9:27 am

I quote from Emma Watson "My life is a sheer privilege because my parents didn't love me less because I was born a daughter. My school did not limit me because I was a girl. My mentors didn't assume that I would go less far because I might give birth to a child one day." This speaks for many female individuals all across the world. However, such protests should not continue further as fighting for women's rights has become "synonymous with man-hating". We must consider the impacts of breaking down traditional gender stereotypes on society as a whole. Research has also shown societal pressures to be aggressive and not reveal vulnerabilities can have negative impacts on men. So we must "perceive gender on a spectrum, not as two opposing sets of ideals." Society must keep an open mind to women's issues by simply showing a willingness to acknowledge and understand the gender inequalities facing women. Its an unwillingness to engage in conversations over the issues that only perpetuates the problem. scratch

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A connection with gender roles?

Post by Lü Biqi on Tue Feb 09, 2016 11:44 pm

We should also consider the issue of gender roles and how it ties in with inequality. "Unlike other groups facing social discrimination, men and women are probably equally represented among the world’s wealthiest households, but women’s presence tends to be predicated on their relationships to wealthy men." - Oxfamblogs. Here women are represented as a 'tick' that would latch on to individuals according to their wealth and opulence. It creates a statement saying that women would only make a name for themselves through financially strong men and that women rely on men to create a living to support the family. This may be true for countries of low development, yet, we cannot generalise this idea or proposition. Female individuals in countries such as Somalia, Congo and Nigeria are forced to act in this way because their rights are disregarded and their voice is unheard or silenced. They have no other choice but to marry men who are wealthy at a very young age in order to survive. Educated women in countries of Sub-Saharan Africa is unheard of or very rare. Consequently, we often see many females of poor backgrounds with partners who are relatively wealthy. Unfortunately, when one witness this it causes society to create judgments and stereotypes against women. This is unfair and inhumane. There should be no such thing as gender roles, both genders should be treated and viewed equally despite the pressures of cultural norms, and no one or anything should be blamed whether it is economical or cultural (men) factors as every individual has a conscience and morals. cheers

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Re: What stands in the way of girls receiving an education?

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