Saturday, May 17, 2014

Lifting up women and girls... what have you done today?

My heart is full today.  It's been a wonderful month in which I have been blessed with a larger than ordinary number of opportunities for self renewal.  A lovely, unplugged week in Hawaii with my husband was followed by a truly special retreat for women called Brave Girls Camp.  Today I was able to be in a room full of women leaders in my community to hear Girl Scouts of the USA CEO Anna Maria Chavez speak about the importance of funding and volunteering for organizations like ours that support and advocate for girls.

When talking with Anna Maria today, she shared with me that the Girl Scout Research Institute has brand new, not yet published research that shows Arizona 49th for girls living in poverty.   We can't really afford to wait any longer to do something about it.  Following that conversation Anna  delivered an inspiring call to action.  We must stand together to raise a generation of leaders or we will face an empty leadership pipeline when we need it most.

I remember a Pete Seeger quote about how lucky we are that the world is so screwed up... because that means it's never been easier to make a real difference in the lives others.  It's funny and it's certainly true that it's easy to make a difference in the lives of women and girls.  Yes, you can share your time, treasure and talents with great organizations like Girl Scouts, but it's even easier than that.

You can begin to lift other women and girls up by such radical actions as shutting down fat talk when you hear it starting around the office or the locker room.  Whenever you hear people commenting on the personal appearance of female political candidates, you can challenge it.  When you hear a young girl say she 'can't do it', you can remind her that instead of "can't" it's probably more likely that she just doesn't know how yet.  These simple but out of the ordinary actions compounded by those of others raise the boats of all women.   We must find ways to make that happen.  Girls and women can't wait any longer.  Girls in Arizona and girls halfway around the world... they can't wait any longer.

You get to choose what you will do to help lift up women and girls... but we all need to you choose to choose.  Think about it.  What can we count on you for?  Post in the comments what you commit to do.

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