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Anya Thakur on educating girls as the first Indian teen to launch a UN Women campaign

Anya Thakur: I was honored to learn UN Women campaign is the first to be launched by an Indian teen and am passionate about education and empowerment for all!

Image courtesy of Anya Thakur for UN Women. 

As my grandmother called to wish me a happy Navratri, a Hindu festival on which girls are celebrated and honored, a few days ago, I am constantly reminded of the power and importance not only women, but all people who know their worth, have.

Each day I am working to further my work as a UN Women advocate and with ShePower, a global organization I founded in partnership with We Movement and MetoWe to empower women in India and globally.

A representative from UN Women recently reached out to express their support for my work and I was honored to learn UN Women campaign is the first to be launched by an Indian teen!

My campaign spotlights the importance of educating and uplifting girls and my work with ShePower , as many underserved women lack access to sanitary pads and hygiene products and in rural India, stigmas prevent girls from going to school and receiving adequate health information or products for menstruation. My aim was to raise awareness of an important issue faced by underserved girls and women in the US, the work I am doing in India destigmatizing periods and to empower and uplift women and their communities, having worked extensively and led outreach efforts in downtown Dallas by donating over 5,000 pads funded by a grant from the Jane Goodall Institute, as well as hosting empowerment and self-defense workshops and disseminating health information and products in parts of India such as Delhi, Coimbatore, Manipur, Tamil Nadu, and Mumbai.

I want to share my story to raise awareness and integrate consciousness and share topics of substance and purpose to inspire young women in their own leadership efforts and pursuing their potential. I work with ShePower and GirlUp Dallas to provide health education and donations in downtown Dallas to Chetna-DFW, and on LA’s Skid Row with LA’s Women’s Shelter with my UN Women and Jane Goodall Foundation grants.

Image courtesy of Anya Thakur for UN Women.

Tremendous progress has been made in education in enrolling boys and girls in school equally. But to build on this achievement and ensure all girls and children reach their fullest potential, it is imperative that they are given the tools they need to succeed and encouraged to complete secondary education and lead productive lives.

As a UN Women advocate, I strive to ensure positive outcomes for all girls and people. I am honored to cover stories on empowerment, equality and impact and to be the first Indian teen to work with the United Nations in such a capacity and helm a campaign to educate and empower girls and women.

Image courtesy of Anya Thakur for UN Women.
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