Julia Lynch

Founding Director, Global Girl Project

As a community leader and as a creator of offerings for others around the world, I often get caught up in the rush of it all and forget to pause and take time to reevaluate and reimagine. I’m sure that I’m not the only one with this challenge, and over the last two years many of us have been offered an opportunity to do just that; to take a step sideways and rethink the way that we do so many things.

Over eight years ago I founded Global Girl Project, an international NGO that mobilises the most marginalised, yet most powerful, girls who are part of the Global Majority to become leaders and agents of social change. One might imagine that in that time Global Girl Project has made many shifts and side steps in order to achieve our mission, and you would be right. We’ve grown from an offering that worked with 10 girls per year to working with over 300 girls annually. This necessary shift in impact was made entirely possible by the pause that many of us experienced over the last two years, the COVID Pause perhaps.

Prior to 2020, Global Girl Project was running annual exchange programs for groups of 10 girls at a time, flying them from places such as Haiti, Sierra Leone, Rwanda and Pakistan to Nepal for five life-shifting weeks of intensive leadership training. The impact on both the girls and their communities, as they travelled back home to run their individual social action projects, was palpable. However, with the end of the world as we knew it we were offered a very backhanded way to rethink and then reimagine the way that we create community and global change through the power of our girls.

Since the very beginning, when Global Girl Project was simply a rumbling of an idea, I knew that our focus would always be to reach, work with, and mobilise the girls who are most isolated within communities around the world. Our mission has always been to work with the girls who many others cannot or choose not to reach. Whether it be due to lack of internet access, English language skills, girls’ inability to do activities outside of the home due to cultural norms, childcare duties or simply due to the thinking that girls don’t need to learn how to lead. Many local, national and international organisations don’t do enough work to mobilise isolated girls who live in poverty within the Global Majority. Global Girl Project intentionally aims to fill that gap. 

You might ask how a small, feminist charity has managed to work in such communities around the world, and the answer is very simple; through collaboration. I know intrinsically that the power of the collective is far more impactful than that of the individual person or organisation. True partnerships with well-established organisations within each of our partner countries, enable us to work with girls who are otherwise isolated and often do not have freedoms outside of their homes. Through our partnerships we are able to work in local languages and within local cultural contexts, however our work includes an international dimension to teach girls about something so powerful that many try to keep its reality a secret.

At Global Girl Project our offerings take girls through a journey that shows them, quite often for the first time, that they have a voice. They learn that this voice is their power, and that the power of their voice can have the most impact in collaboration with their communities, both locally and internationally. We teach our girls that they have a responsibility to use that powerful voice to create the change that they want to see in their communities.

You might be wondering why we teach girls about being a leader and using their own voice instead of focusing on issue specific work such as education, sexual health, or gender-based violence? The answer is very straightforward: if a girl doesn’t know she has a voice, and if a girl doesn’t know how to use her voice to share her thoughts and ideas for change, she won’t be able to make use of her education or speak about what she wants in a relationship, or stand up for herself against the violence that is perpetrated against her. Voice and leadership are relevant in all areas of girls’ lives. It is for this reason that we must teach all of our girls that they already are leaders and that their voice is a tool they have full access to. We must find the girls who feel voiceless, who are isolated within their homes and communities, and work collaboratively to mobilise them for social change.

At Global Girl Project we are changing the world through the power of our girls. We are asking girls to reflect, pause, and then take action, and we know how powerful this can be. As this year draws to a close and we enter a new season of change, I challenge you to take a step sideways, and take your own moment to pause and reflect. In that moment of re-evaluation question where you can take steps to do what you are doing, in work or in life, in an even more impactful way.

To become a Global Changemaker yourself and donate monthly please go to our Website for further details.


Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Support Seven Courses!

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet consectetur adipiscing elit dolor

Recent posts

Featured articles