We have long heard from the NGOs that educating girls is the key to raising the economic parameters and health of societies and countries. It would seem logical that if uneducated girls are seen to be an economic burden on families, that by educating and empowering them they will be an economic advantage. Educating girls may even equate to the improved health and well being of the planet itself. We need a balance between progress and preservation.
Several writers have recently equated the destruction of the planet and the current wars and unrest as being symptomatic of a global society out of gender balance. Not only are there 160 million girls/women ‘missing from the planet’ at this point of time there are still places where the education and empowerment of girls and women is seen as pointless and uneconomical.
A balanced perspective is vital to all systems be they natural, societal or even global.
Woman still tend to be the carers and nurturers in the family situation whether they are working or not; it is the nature of things. They also tend to nurture the general environment and other creatures of the planet, be they plant or animal.
With an earth torn to shreds by war and careless exploitation global society is suffering terribly on many fronts, particularly the reduced lives of women, children and men.
All the planetary systems tell us we are not in a healthy state. Finding the balance seems to be the immediate imperative.
This leads me to our first two articles, written by women from the MESA region. Dr Elghblawi has written on women’s empowerment and efforts in the region to raise the status of women and girls, to enable them to bring their knowledge and talents to the betterment of their societies.
The second is from two young women in Pakistan, writing sensibly and practically on ways we can heal our environment. It will take an active effort by all countries to achieve our lost balance and health. This sort of work is vital as we need to actively restore and heal our planet and it should give us all hope that the young people of all genders are focusing on this urgent need.