This post is dedicated to my mentee/sister and all the girls and women in the world who are faced with challenges due to extreme poverty.
Today, David and I will run a half marathon Two-gether at Land Between Lakes. The approach I take to tackle this half marathon will be different then my typical half marathon strategies in the past. The reason- Today I run for YOU!
Two months ago, I was introduced to a program called the Global Give Back Circle (GBBC). The Global Give Back Circle provides girls around the world from disadvantaged backgrounds with the skills, savvy, and support to escape the cycle of poverty and empower the next generation of girls to do the same. This is accomplished through a mentoring program, Private Sector engagement and Government and Local Community support through a “Circle of Empowerment”.
As a mentor engaged in this program for only two months now, I can say that I have received more from my little sister than I ever can have imagined in such a short period of time. During our bonding, I have been captivated by her positive attitude and her determination to succeed no matter what challenges she is faced with. I am learning that the issues in my life or the challenges I face are minimal compared to what other girls and women are facing throughout the world.
The challenges many of these girls are facing are multifaceted. For instance, West Pokot is among the areas in Kenya where many girls are forced into early marriage and FGM- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pokot_People . Over the past several years the work that World Vision and Margo Day have done by raising funds and awareness for the Kenya Child Protection and Education Project has positively impacted the children in this area. Through these efforts, many of the girls in the West Pokot area now have a second chance in life. Schools have been built such as St. Elizabeth’s to provide a safe haven and education for girls who have fled home from FGM and early marriage. Through the GBBC, girls are chosen to be part of the Global Give Back Scholar Program. The girls that are chosen for this program are girls with great drive, ambition and determination, who refuse to accept the hand destiny tried to deal them. As a Global Give Back Scholar, the girls grow emotionally, intellectually and spiritually in a nurturing and motivating environment and are guided and motivated by a mentor through a Five Phase Transformational Process .
I am thankful that I have the opportunity to participate and engage in the GGBC. I am also fortunate to work for Microsoft, a company that supports and matches with dollars every volunteer hour that I dedicate to my sister through this mentoring program. I would not trade this opportunity for anything.
Today, I will run this half marathon in honor of my mentee/sister and the girls around the world who are struggling to survive against all odds. With each step I take, I will think about you and will leverage your strength. I will face the challenges and obstacles that confront me during this race with the same determination and passion that you exude as you strive to become strong, successful women and leaders. Together, we are a force and we can accomplish anything that we put our hearts, mind and soul into!
13.1 Here I come!
If you would like to become a mentor or find out more about how you can donate to support the Global Give Back Circle, please visit the following site: Global Give Back Circle