This Girl is on Fire

Lisa Anderson
Posted March 8, 2015 from United States

In honor of International Women's Day, I am reposting this blog from last year.

I vividly remember watching the documentary“Girl Rising”in 2013 with my dear friend.

I cried, I laughed and I smiled watching the journeys of nine girls coming of age in the developing world. My friend and I left the theater feeling deeply inspired and called to action.

Today I revisit this memory onInternational Women’s Day, a celebration dear to my heart. This day –– this time of year –– always energizes me as a writer and an aspiring activist.

International Women’s Day exists to “inspire change, challenge inequality, celebrate achievement and forge our daughters’ futures.”

I think World Pulse Founder Jensine Larsensays it best: “I have a burning, unquenchable hunger to know what the world will look like when women and girls experience freedom to live to their full potential.”

Globally, 66 million girls are not enrolled in school. In a single year, approximately 150 million girls are victims of sexual violence. Fourteen million girls under age 18 will be married this year.

As we learned from “Girl Rising,” educating girls can break cycles of poverty in just one generation, and education has a lasting affect on girls, families, communities and nations around the world.

The late great Nelson Mandela said, “Educationis the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world,” and he couldn’t be more right.

Today, I am reminding myself to get out of my comfort zone and stretch my mind –– to delve more deeply into issues that affect women and to not become complacent with my own day-to-day life in Portland.

Today, I am celebrating my lovely mother, sister, grandmother, aunts, cousins, coworkers, roommates, friends, mentors, sheroes and the next generation of girls with twinkles in their eyes. I honor the memory of the foremothers who have gone before me.

Today, I am recommitting myself to the women’s movement and to a career focused on women’s empowerment.

Watch out, world.This girl is on fire!

Comments 6

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Mar 09, 2015
Mar 09, 2015

Lisa, so glad to see you back in our community, we missed you!

And - also very happy to see your commitment :-)

Emily Garcia
Mar 09, 2015
Mar 09, 2015

Lisa! Thank you for reposting. Your feiry passion is catching! What a beautiful women's day it has been to celebrate life, each other, all the women, men, children in our lives. 

I agree with you that education is key. When all girls grow up believing in their potential because it is what is daily communicated to them by their friends, families, teachers, will be a wonderful day indeed!

Yvette Warren
Mar 11, 2015
Mar 11, 2015

This is so lovely and so powerful. I would love to have the opportunity to actually hear you speak your passion.

I am certain that this October, in Salt Lake City Utah, USA, we will make known to the world that women's voices matter in all things. I am acting as an ambassador to the 2015 Parliament of the World's Religions For the first time, this year, the parliament is having a "women's initiative."

In addition to asking my WP sisters and brothers to consider attending the parliament, I am working with World Pulse Sister Zeph, SHEROES United, and One Billion Rising to create a parade of people in support of social justice for women. Sister Urmila is bringing her menstrual hygiene campaign to the parade event.

I would love to have a group join us in support of your efforts.

Terry Mullins
Mar 12, 2015
Mar 12, 2015

Hi Lisa! Thank you for this lovely, timely, thoughtful...and yes, girl, you ARE on fire!! 

Lisa Anderson
Mar 15, 2015
Mar 15, 2015

Thank you all for the kind comments, and thank you Yvette for the links! I hope you all had a wonderful International Women's Day. :-)

Jul 07, 2015
Jul 07, 2015

GOD bless you so muchc