“Gender equality is the focal point for human progression” is the bold statement made in an article addressing the twin issues of girls’ access to education and to medical care.
Packed with facts that are at turns either inspiring or shocking, the article on The Elders details the interconnectedness of health and education and the massive impact it can have. This is an impact not only on individuals but their families, communities and national economies.
Education and health is key in a workforce that can rise from poverty and toward economic growth. In turn that reduces inequalities and provides a sustainable path towards reinvestment, building of essential infrastructure, consideration of environmental impact and better health provision.
Nor are they two isolated concepts. Better education leads to a higher uptake of vaccinations, more family planning, cuts birth rates, improves nutrition, and lowers child and maternal mortality. Medical problems or the prohibitive cost of treatment reduce access to education as this becomes the greater focus for a family, especially one with limited resources. So the two feed into one another.
- Of the 130 million children not in school, 70% of them are girls.
- Having 10% more girls in school increases a country’s GDP by 3%.
- Educated and employed women reinvest 90% of their income into their family – the figure for men is around 30-40%.
- It’s thought that 200 million women around the world want to be able to use contraceptives, but do not have access to them.
At the Gardiner Foundation we believe in the power people have to sustainably work lift themselves from poverty with the right support and investment. Not only does this benefit the individuals but their families, communities and wider economy. The profits from self employment or a small business are reinvested into education, healthcare, family and the community. The positive effects are felt everywhere.