The socio-political atmosphere, in many parts of the world, is in flux. At least anecdotally, conservatism is on the rise across the globe. This typically means that liberal movements, like feminism, are going to get side-tracked, or even attacked. These are confusing times for a young child to grow up. On the one hand, there are greater opportunities for women today, than there ever have been. On the other, there is the ominous rhetoric of ‘showing women their place’ that is on the rise in all media, including the internet. Fortunately, the internet also houses a ton of wonderful resources for young children to grow up to be fierce, feminist, and brilliant. Here is our list of favorite websites for young children:
A Mighty Girl
A Mighty Girl was founded by Carolyn Danckaert and Aaron Smith of Washington, D.C, USA. They are both alumni of the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Syracuse University, and live with their four nieces and nephew.
While raising their nieces, the founders realized that many stories, toys and movies for children, tend to portray the girl as damsels in distress. They wanted to bring up the kids to believe that they could be their own hero, have their own adventures and be their own kind of awesome. So, they started curating resources on a website for young girls. The fruits of their love and labor became amightygirl.com in 2012, a platform where they share their finds with all the little girls out there.
The website contains information on toys, books, movies and other resources celebrating power girls. They also feature role models and parenting tips for empowered girl children.
Girl Up is the UN Foundation’s adolescent girl campaign. They launched in 2010, and have since promoted health, safety, education and leadership of girls in developing nations. Her Majesty Queen Rania Al Abdullah of Jordan and Latin American business leader, Angélica Fuentes, are global ambassadors of the program.
The Girl Up team has enabled the formation of 850 Girl Up clubs in 66 countries. Here, the youth leaders speak up for the rights of women, in places where lives of women are the toughest in the world. This website for young girls provides them the opportunity to be inspired by the stories, join the movement and support the cause.
The Girls Inc. movement started in New England, during the Industrial Revolution. Young rural girls had then, moved to the city, in search of employment. Since then, the organization has provided informal education to young girls, ‘to take risks and master physical, intellectual and emotional challenges’.
The website provides success stories, inspiration, scholarship opportunities, employment opportunities, among other useful resources for the young girl who wants to be independent.
The next one is my personal favorite among the listed websites for young girls, and the most unique one as well!
One of my favorite additions to this list is the Rejected Princesses. The website is the creation of Jason Porath, an animator known for his work in the famous movies, How to Train Your Dragon 2, The Croods, and Kung Fu Panda 2. In 2014, Porath left the industry and started this website as a blog. He wanted to give the running joke in the industry a practical spin – “who is the least likely woman to ever get an animation princess treatment?”
So, he did this. Every week, he would pick a mighty lady from history or mythology, draw her into a well-researched, yet funny, animation write-up. His creations went viral. A book followed suit. And Porath never looked back.
The women explored in his website belong from a wide selection of cultures and geographies. But, they all have one thing in common – they are strong headed and capable of achieving anything they set their heart to. The mission of the website is to show that ‘not only can girls be anything, they already have been’.
His creations have now been published in the form of a book (buy it here). It can be your thoughtful gift to your powerful princess on her special day!
I Am That Girl
Girl children are more susceptible to the attacks of the consumerist media. Every day, the market is dictating how a girl should talk, walk, look or feel, through subliminal or direct messages. Young girls are suffering needlessly from self-doubt and depression, to feed millions to the beauty and fashion industries, among others.
I Am That Girl provides inspiration and resources for girls all over the world, to love themselves for who they are – through community support. The website provides material and motivational stories, opportunities to connect and create local chapters, as well as the summary of their impact.
The conversation is powerful
I am hopeful, that over the years, we would see these content trickle down to every young girl in all parts of the world. India needs a healthy dose of these conversations to further its continuing struggle with women empowerment. Let the fire burn strong through the storms of time!
Note: All photos are taken from the respective websites on the list. Pic credit belongs to respective websites.
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