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Harnessing the Power of Teenage Girls

The marginalization of girls worldwide is morally reprehensible, socially self-defeating, and economically foolish. By addressing it, we could not only protect millions of children, but also tackle some of the greatest challenges facing the world today.

LAGOS – When you think of teenage girls, you might imagine common stereotypes, from the “mean girl” to the sullen high school student locked in her bedroom. The reality is that teenage girls are not only some of the world’s most marginalized people; they also have virtually unmatched potential to help build a better future for all.

As it stands, adolescent girls are routinely denied control over their destinies. More than 32 million of the poorest are currently out of school. Every day, 39,000 girls under the age of 18 become someone’s wife. For huge numbers of girls worldwide, reproductive rights seem like an impossible dream.

This situation is morally reprehensible, socially self-defeating, and economically foolish. By addressing it, we could not only protect millions of children; we could also tackle some of the greatest challenges facing the world today.

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