Why #GIRLWITHABOOK Matters

A fabulous, fabulous post from #GIRLWITHABOOK co-founder Lena Shareef. It’s Olivia posting this, so this isn’t shameless self-promotion, it’s shameless buddy/partner/friend promotion. Remember to vote! Less than 24 hours left : http://expeditiongranted.nationalgeographic.com/project/girlwithabook/

LENA SHAREEF

Recently, a friend and supporter of #GIRLWITHABOOK reminded me that although National Geographic is known for spectacular nature and wildlife photography, its most famous image is a portrait of a 12-year-old Afghan refugee girl named Sharbat Gula. Her photograph was taken at a refugee camp at the Afghanistan-Pakistan border. The photographer was Steve McCurry and he found her sitting in a tent, which served as a girls’ school.

Like millions of people, this portrait captured my heart almost the moment I first saw it. And now every time I look at it, I think of the mere 12% literacy rate for girls in Pakistan, I think of the 200,000 women in South Africa who are victims of violence every year, I think of the countless women in the US who are raped on college campuses.

This photograph reminds of girls and women who are denied their rights to this day. But it…

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