Championing Girls Through Health and Private/Public Partnerships

The shooting of Malala Yousufzai by a member of the Taliban captures both the challenges faced by many girls around the world and the spirit to fight for equality. Malala continued to go to school and advocate for girls education in the face of threats from the Taliban. She and another girl were shot this week while traveling to school. The head wound that Malala suffered was severe, but recent reports indicate that she is on the road to recovery.

International Day of the Girl is celebrated for the first time ever to call to attention the challenges that girls face and celebrate the courage of advocates like Malala. One important way to support girls around the world is through health.  Thanks to the outstanding research, communication and advocacy efforts by the organizations and campaigns like Girl EffectGirl Up10×10, the Center for Global Development, the World Bank and others, there is clear and demonstrable evidence that good health is the key to unleashing the full potential of girls.

There are no shortages of known interventions that have the potential to expand access to healthcare for girls and women, but there are gaps. The structure of public/private partnerships have evolved to a genuine partnership that is mutually beneficial. Whether an organization’s bottom line is measured in lives saved, revenue, or a combination of the two, everyone wins.

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