Friday March 8, is International Women’s Day. In observance of that day, Kids in Distressed Situations (K.I.D.S.) is pleased to launch “G.I.R.L.S.” (Girls in Real Life Situations), a new initiative aimed at helping girls and young women achieve academically, lead healthy and physically active lives, and discover an interest in science and math.
For over 20 years, K.I.D.S. has worked behind the scenes to provide basic needs to domestic violence shelters, to Safe Sleep programs benefiting young mothers, and to programs promoting literacy among girls. But the G.I.R.L.S. program will put an emphasis on our efforts. K.I.D.S. believes that empowering and educating women by giving them the tools they need to thrive is an essential part of fighting poverty across the globe.
The Feminization of Poverty
- Women make up 70% of the world’s 1.5 billion people living in absolute poverty (earning less than $2 USD a day).
- Women perform 66% of the world’s work, produce 50% of the food, but earn 10% of the income and own 1% of the property.
- 876 million adults are illiterate, of which 2/3 are women.
- Out of 114 million children not in school, 60% are girls.
- Every minute a woman dies of complications related to pregnancy or childbirth (more than 500,000 women every year).
- One in three women is beaten, coerced into sex or otherwise abused by an intimate partner in the course of her lifetime.
- Each year almost 500,000 women and young girls enter Western Europe as part of the illegal trade in humans.
- In the United States, the poverty rate is higher for women. 13.8% of females are poor compared to 11.1% of men (2007). The rates change but are consistently higher for women in all racial and ethnic groups, age groups and women with or without children. Women are paid 77% of what men earn, even with the same qualifications.
How Can K.I.D.S. Make A Difference?
Through our G.I.R.L.S. program, our organization will equip women to become active participants in the development of their communities. We promote gender equity by helping to ensure that girls have what they need to grow up to be strong, productive adults — like access to literacy and educational materials, new active wear and shoes and access to programs that encourage them to succeed in their careers.
We will continue our work with an even greater focus to provide new home goods and apparel to give women in domestic violence shelters a chance at a new life and for new moms living in high poverty areas the safe baby gear, diapers and educational materials they need to provide for their infants.
By empowering girls and women, we fight poverty and help build a better world. In honor of International Women’s Day on March 8, we invite you to join us in taking action.
Three Ways You Can Help
Make a product donation to our G.I.R.L.S. Program. If you are a manufacturer you can make a donation of girls activewear, shoes, books or educational material. Or you can make a donation benefiting women in domestic violence shelters or new moms in need of safe baby gear.
Volunteer to organize a product drive of new girls items in your office, school, church or synagogue. Through funding provided by the Eileen Fisher Foundation, K.I.D.S. will cover all shipping charges of the new merchandise you collect to one of our G.I.R.L.S. programs in an area affected by Hurricane Sandy.
Make a one-time financial donation to our G.I.R.L.S. Program. Your contribution will help protect girls and women and prevent the cycle of abuse, exploitation, and discrimination through products and programs that ensure that girls have the activewear, shoes, books and educational materials that they need to grow up to be strong, productive adults. And for the women living in high-risk situations, your gift will provide new home goods and apparel to women in domestic violence shelters and safe baby gear, diapers and educational materials for new moms.