The worldwide campaign - Girl Rising – will come to India in 2015 and will aim to increase secondary school completion rates for girls and reduce gender discrimination in India. The campaign uses the art of storytelling to promote the truth about the transformative power of educating girls.
USAID has provided start-up funding for Girl Rising: ENGAGE INDIA (Empowering New Generations to Advance Girls’ Education), to bring Girl Rising to India and engage a diverse cross-section of allies to take action for girls.
The India-specific campaign is a two-year initiative with a focused goal of getting more girls to pass Class 10 and increasing secondary school completion rates for girls and reduce gender-based discrimination.
Priyanka Chopra and Freida Pinto will be the brand ambassadors for India’s Girl Rising campaign.
Priyanka Chopra was chic in an all-white ensemble while Freida Pinto was dressed in a sharp suit in blue.
For the press conference, the two ambassadors looked chic in formal outfits.
Bollywood siren, singer and former Miss World Priyanka Chopra has long been associated with the Girl Rising campaign. Backing the campaign as it comes to India, Chopra said, "I've been a part of the Girl Rising campaign since inception and am honoured to be able to bring this powerful idea to India.
“I am also extremely humbled by and grateful for the support from my colleagues in the industry. If more girls are educated, all of India stands to gain. The Girl Rising campaign aims to address that through various innovative initiatives that will not only help create awareness but also create a tangible platform to effect change."
Priyanka was joined by seven high-profile personalities including actor-model Freida Pinto, Holly Gordon – co-founder and chief executive at Girl Rising, Samantha Wright, VP of Global Programs at Girl Rising, Lloyd Mathias from HP, Ashutosh Chadha and Debjani Ghosh from Intel, Neeta Broochra – President at FICCI FLO, Vivek Rangachari – Director & Commissioning Producer at DAR Motion Pictures, Priya Naik – founder of Samhita Social Ventures, amongst others.
Freida said: “Too often, it is social and traditional ideas that are holding girls back. People just can't imagine a different future for girls. The time has come where instead of questioning why we should educate girls, we should be asking why not. When we know that educating a girl can change the world, why wait?
“With Girl Rising we will change that.”
Speaking at the event, co-founder of Girl Rising, Holly Gordon said: “Educating girls is not only vital to India’s prosperity and stability, but also represents an unprecedented economic opportunity. Women are the biggest emerging market ever seen. They influence 65% of the world’s annual consumer spending–and, right now it is estimated that there are 270 million women and girls under age 25 in India.
“By not educating girls equally, it is estimated that India misses out on potential economic growth of about $33bn per year,” she warned.
Internationally, Girl Rising has support from corporates including Intel, Microsoft, Ford, Nike, and CNN, as well as from highly influential individuals such as UN Special Envoy for Education Gordon Brown, Queen Rania of Jordan, Meryl Streep, Alicia Keys, Anne Hathaway, Liam Neeson, and financier Pete Peterson.
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