Vote for Leah Balter's project

“Who run the world? Girls.”

Unfortunately, Beyoncé’s inspirational words have not yet reached all corners of the world—a shortcoming I hope to remedy.

The future of global responsibility, accountability, and sustainability lies in the hands of women and girls from every walk of life. Solutions to the most pressing problems that face the international community, as well as singular countries, lay untouched within the mind of a girl who was told that she is worth no more than the labor her body can produce.

It is for this reason – to tap the unrelenting potential of every young girl – that I propose a project to harness the brainpower and creativity of young girls who would otherwise lack in opportunities.

When I think about the most impactful aspects of my education, I often find myself fondly reminiscing about the classes in which I was given the freedom and tools to form, share, and debate my own opinions. To solve problems, our generation must learn how to critically think and compromise; organizations such as the United Nations function only as well as the delegates of which they are comprised.

Through AFS Project Change, I would like to run a Model United Nations (MUN) workshop for young girls in Nepal, a country where over 50% of females over the age of 15 cannot read or write, to encourage education, open-mindedness, and employment. I envision working with other volunteers and young girls to discover Nepal’s role in the global community, in part, through exploring international relations generally.

MUN is, perhaps, one of the most consequential activities a student can take part in through her school, as the program invites cultural awareness, innovation, and problem-solving skills. If the program were implemented this summer, I would begin the workshop with an overview of international diplomacy, women’s roles in international organizations, and Nepal as a world player. I would then teach different methods and models of critical thinking, self-advocacy, and argumentative skills, all culminating in a small-scale MUN conference following the weeks of learning and preparation, possibly on the topic of women’s rights.

For a young Nepalese girl to spend even just a few weeks learning about the UN and how every country plays an important role in world politics, it could mean the difference between being complacent with minimal learning and fighting for an education, dropping out of school and continuing to higher education, working an unfulfilling job and being her country’s next UN ambassador. Providing the opportunity for young girls to learn about a world outside of their own and giving them tools to think for themselves is invaluable, as it has the potential to spur a lifelong love of learning and thinking.

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Project Title:
Run The World (Girls)
Issue Area:

Leah Balter.

Baltimore, MD