There are many factors that can hinder a girl from attaining full education. Plan International have outlined 6 of these.
The cost of education
-In many cases education can incur costs, from nominal fees, uniforms, transport and books. For some where these costs are too high, girls will be neglected whilst her male counterpart achieves the education they both deserve.
Distance to school
-Sometimes the school of choice that the parents wish their children to go to can be far away, with no personal means of transport this could mean walking for hours. With gender norms people opt to keep their girls at home out of fear of the dangers that she may encounter on her journey.
Violence at school
-Safety is always a concern when sending girls to school. Sometimes it is the commute, other times it’s the teachers, peers, or even the environment. Although situations are improving, there are still cases where what should be a refuge for any child, is not. We have all heard the story of Malala, and how she was targeted by the Taliban for supporting girls education and attending school.
-In many situations the household duties are valued to be more important than a girls education. She is given no choice but to partake in fetching water, cooking, looking after the young and other household chores. Here she loses decision making ability and power which would come with an education
-When there is poverty, even more basic needs come first, water, food and basic health. If these can not be addressed it becomes very difficult for the child to attend school. However many organisations overcome this by ensuring the child gets clean water, a meal and health checks when they attend school.
Early marriage and pregnancy
When young girls are forced into early marriage, they are often pulled from school as soon as they reach pubescent age. They then move in with their husband and although illegal, teen pregnancies are not uncommon. How can a young girl manage a household, a pregnancy, young children and an education? Education is the easy and only choice to sacrifice.
Plan International have great resources and are working tirelessly to remove the obstacles these girls face on an international scale. CARE is also aware of the issues that the girl child can and are more likely to face than boys, but we help all children, boys and girls alike, who may be unable to go to school. We work to fund those that cannot afford fees, equip them with uniforms and textbooks. Where distance is a problem we look to alternative housing, residential schools or hostels. We try to ensure the projects we support are sustainable but we will always need your help to ensure we can set them up. We focus on MDG2- help us to get that one step closer.