Shaping Opportunities for our Girls

Thompson Reuters Foundation

“If we don’t give opportunities to our girls, what are we going to do?” Dr. Maria Calle, Director of Adolescent and Youth Programming in Peru’s Ministry of Health, posed this question last month when describing the government’s effort to develop a strategy to reduce adolescent pregnancy.

As a long time advocate for women and girls, Maria's sentiment resonated with me and the funding and advocacy that we do at the Global Fund for Women. This is the time to act in support for girls. The cost of inaction is far more detrimental to our world and our hopes for post 2015 development aspirations.

We focus on adolescent girls for the 2014 Resolve Award because, as one of the nominators said, “Young people are our future, of course. But they are also our present.”

Reproductive health and rights are critical to empowering women and girls globally and to unlocking development progress. The Global Leaders Council for Reproductive health believes in this, and it is why I am in Geneva during the World Health Assembly to present the Resolve Award to four countries for their leadership in advancing reproductive health and rights, especially for girls. As leaders from around the world gather to discuss global health issues and shape the priorities for the post-2015 development framework reproductive health and rights must be at the center.