This blog was posted on behalf of Karen Spencer, Intel’s Director of Global Education Integration.
Last week, 21 girls (ages 18-20) from around the world came together for the G(irls)20 Summit in France, in advance of the G20 meeting, to debate, discuss and develop recommendations for the leaders of the world’s most powerful nations. After three days of workshops, Q&A sessions with expert speakers, and various other educational activities, the girls crafted a communiqué to be given to the G20, asking for the elimination of obstacles that hinder girls and women from being part of the solution to global challenges we all face. They declared that “investing in, believing in and empowering women is not only the right policy, but the policy that makes the most economic sense.”
Listening to the girls formulate and ask meaningful questions regarding the issues at hand; reducing coerced marriage and sex trafficking, using technology to power change, finding your passion and more, made me realize just how impressive these young women are. And, not only are they talking about the issues, many of them are already active in creating solutions with their own non-profit organizations. There is no question in my mind that these 21 girls are all going to make something of themselves, impacting the world in a positive way, given their strength and passion. I was simply blown away. Two days later and a handful of the girls have already contacted me to talk about their work, often about integrating the summit learnings into what they’re doing.
The committee and the G(irls)20 Summit organizers are busy getting the Communiqué out to media outlets around the world and G20 Leaders and Ambassadors. The question of the day is … Will these Leaders listen to these girls? Will the work of the 21 young women have an impact on the G20 proceedings and outcome? The Communiqué will be posted at www.girlsandwomen.com. Read it and if you agree, spread the word. Women have the potential to play a pivotal role in global economic progress and peace building … we just need to give them the opportunity.