International Women's Day 2017
Wednesday the 8th March is International Women's Day, a day to campaign for gender-parity around the world, challenge gender bias and celebrate the achievements of women and girls. So, we're taking this opportunity to highlight the problems, bias and discrimination that girls and young women in both India and the UK face on a daily basis, and how Magic Bus is empowering them to fight for a brighter future.
In Lambeth, Teenage Girls face a future at risk of drug misuse, crime, teenage pregnancy and overall poor wellbeing and sometimes lack support specifically tailored to their needs.
Magic Bus UK provides a specialised teenage girls programme to tackle these issues and empower teenage girls in Lambeth to seek a brighter future. Using a curriculum adapted from our successful work in India, participants have the opportunity to take part in activities such as boxing and dance and participate in group discussions about issues they care about, all in the safety of a female only space with support and guidance from a Magic Bus trained coach.
This all serves as an outlet for participants, helping give them the confidence they need to live positive, healthy lives.
In India, girls and young women face different problems. Despite efforts to encourage gender equality, women can still often be perceived as second class citizens, who's duty is to the home. Only 48% of young women regularly attend secondary school while 19% of women aged between 15 and 17 are married, thus negatively impacting their health and life opportunities.
Magic Bus is working hard to change the status quo. Through our innovative curriculum of physical activity and mentoring, we are empowering girls to have a stake in their own futures and to have a voice in their communities. We are also showing proving to boys that girls are equals and deserve the same respect and treatment. The results speak for themselves: 82% of Magic Bus children believe that it is just as important to invest in a girl's future as it is a boy's. Additionally, many young women go on to become Magic Bus Community Youth Leaders: volunteers helping run the programme, serving as leaders, role models and positive examples within their communities that girls and women can achieve everything that boys and men can.
As you can see, Magic Bus is working hard to empower girls and young women and to fight for gender equality in India and the UK. With your support, we can ensure thousands of more girls are given the opportunity to decide their own future.