TRAILBLAZER THURSDAY: Future Trailblazers
Updated: Nov 1, 2018
The United Nations declares October 11 as the International Day of the Girl Child. Started in 2011, it was established as a 100% youth-led national movement fighting for gender justice and youth rights.
The day aims to dismantle patriarchy, fight for social justice and is rooted in girl-led activism across the country. Outraged by the devaluation of female-identifying youth, this day is spent examining these issues and working on the inclusion of girls voices in the movement for social justice and grassroots activism.
So today, we write a letter to the future generation of trailblazers.
Dear Future Trailblazers,
We encourage you to find your passion and trailblaze your own path in the world. We champion you to follow the examples of many young girls who acted as pioneers/justice seekers in the world and advocates for female empowerment. Become an agent for change in your community.
Follow Malala Yousafzai from Pakistan, who at 11 used the media as a platform to share her story as a child navigating through Pakistan’s war with the Taliban. She became an internally displaced person (IDP), but after her return raised her voice louder in support of giving Pakistani girls access to a free quality education. At 15, she was shot in the head by the Taliban for standing up for female rights to education. She survived, but instead of stopping her mission, she wrote a book about her experiences and started a fund where today she helps girls in other countries stand up and provoke change in their communities.
Follow Jazz Jennings from Florida, who was diagnosed with gender dysphoria at age 3, came out as the youngest recorded case of transgender identification at age 5 and had her gender confirmation surgery this year at age 18. She is a national activist for LGBTQ rights, has her own docu-series entitled I am Jazz on TLC and co-wrote a children’s book on transgender identification by the same name.
Follow Bindi Irwin from Australia, who after her late father Steve Irwin’s death honored her hero in a documentary called My Daddy the Crocodile Hunter at age 8. She took their shared passion for wildlife conservation and continued his work. She hosted her own show called Bindi: The Jungle Girl in 2007, appeared on multiple talk shows sharing her passion and even won Dancing with the Stars with partner Derek Hough in 2015.
Follow Madison Kimrey from North Carolina, who became a voter’s rights activist at age 12, and started a youth organization advocating for the reintroduction of a voter preregistration bill for 16- and 17-year-olds.
Follow Maya Penn from Georgia, who started her own business at age 8 selling eco-friendly handmade clothes and accessories and went on to receive a commendation from President Barack Obama for outstanding achievement in environmental stewardship. Now at 18, she gives TED Talks.
Follow Mo’ne Ikea Davis from Pennsylvania, who at age 13 became the first African- American female to play in the Little League World Series in 2014.
Follow Annie Gersh from California, who started as a teen advisor for the United Nations National Girl Up board in 2011, and went on to have her visit to Guatemala meeting with survivors of violence and students fighting for an education featured on TeenVogue.com
There are so many movements that have yet to be heard and passions unfulfilled. Will you be part of our next set of female trailblazers?
Team KSA, a woman-owned business
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