Home Page - Gulf in the Media
HomePoliticsEconomy                               Set Gulfinthemedia.com as home page
Opinions
"Postings of opinions published in the Gulf and international newspapers
 Print  Send This Page
Save Listen to this Article
Why girls are the solution to 'overpopulation'   

Arab News - 10 May, 2012
Author: Nowell Sukkar Blacklaw

In the midst of rapid, constant and never-ending change it is easy to overlook one of the fundamental causes at the core of many social, economic and environmental problems… "overpopulation."

Demographers, environmentalists and scientists estimate that the earth has the capacity to support and sustain approximately 4 billion people. At this point in time we are 7 billion, the United Nations projects this to reach 9.3 billion by 2040.

Population growth is destroying ecosystems, affecting climate change and causing loss of agricultural land to residential and industrial development.

China has succeeded with its one child policy which has prevented more than 400 million births since its inception.

India, however, increases its population every year by approximately 25 million.

The Philippines is already beyond its carrying capacity, its population is close to 100,000,000 the country can no longer feed itself, and has become the biggest rice importer on the planet.

What it desperately needs is a government-supported family planning program, but this is proving to be impossible, some blame the lack of progress (with passing a reproductive health bill in Congress) on corruption, others blame the Catholic Church and while the battle of ideologies rather than economics continues 2 million Filipino babies are born every year.

A recent study by the Guttmacher Institute found that the cost of providing birth control to the quarter billion women on the planet, who want it, is about $ 4.50 a year per woman, this could be the difference between having 8 billion mouths to feed by the end of the century, instead of 15 billion.

The UK government’s chief scientist has warned that food reserves are at a fifty-year low and that the world will require 50 percent more energy, food and water by 2030.

We need to break the vicious cycle of poverty, lack of education, lack of employment and incessant breeding which has left many charities; NGO’s and aid organizations overwhelmed and forever playing catch up.

The solution to this problem rests on the shoulders of all 12-year-old girls living in poverty.

If we can support girls, by providing them with a safe environment to learn, give them life skills, mentoring and nutrition we can go above and beyond impacting the life of a child. We will impact the whole family, the whole tribe and its community in the most positive way.

Last December as I traveled through Egypt, the Arab world’s most populous nation, with an estimated population of 90 million, I was able to interview many people in Arabic, as I spoke with one, others would gather around anxious to tell their stories; the common thread of despair, frustration and hopelessness was evident in all.

Mona, a single mother of six, in Luxor said “my husband left when I was seven months pregnant, he told me he would send money once he found work.” A year later she learned he was in Cairo with another woman and a baby on the way. “I cannot send my girls to school, I cannot pay for shoes or books,” She said.

Divorce is endemic; most re-marry and have more children they cannot support. It is girls who suffer most; many are married off as soon as they are old enough to bring in a dowry, usually to a much older man.

Souad another single mother, has four children, her husband went to Saudi Arabia three years ago, he sent her a message, saying that he had met someone else and was starting a new life. Souad said: “He promised to send money, he lied, we needed food, I sent my 14-year-old daughter to work in Cairo, the broker told me she would come home every 6 months; that was 2 years ago.” Souad is desperate; she has 2 other daughters and is scared of what their fate will be.

I was unable to reach remote country areas where I’m told there is a growing trend of exploitation of young Egyptian girls by their families and brokers, who arrange what is known as “seasonal marriages.” These marriages provide a smokescreen for exploitation by wealthy married men.

Female children, in small villages are forced to marry against their will in order to provide money for their families.

The girl is taken as a bride so that the man is not shunned by his community. Within 3-6 months the girl is divorced, in most cases she is too ashamed to return home, often remaining and existing in abuse and enslavement by the first wife. This is also common practice in Yemen. While girls in developed countries have the freedom to go to school, raise their hands in class and share their opinions, girls in developing countries are burdened with chores and responsibilities from a very young age.

There are many reasons for high illiteracy amongst girls in developing countries; society shapes their role and too often cultural and religious practices such as female genital mutilation are the cause of such unbelievable suffering, that attending school is the least of a child’s worries.

A girl should be able to study in a safe, peaceful environment; however life in most homes is harsh and cramped. Families have many children; noisy toddlers are a constant burden on their older sisters.

Mothers do not allow their girls to study until housework and other chores such as collecting water are done, once these are attended to, girls have very little time or energy for homework.

Poverty is the reason why many girls in developing countries cannot go to school. They marry early, work in the fields or as domestic laborers in order to help their families put food on the table.

The solution starts with a 12-year-old girl. Don’t take her out of school when she’s old enough to bring in a dowry, provide an incentive for her family (i.e. a cow, a goat or plough), keep her there through secondary school and then connect her to a decent job.

When I presented this information to The CORONA charity group, Riyadh chapter, it’s members voted overwhelmingly to allocate a substantial part of funds raised in 2012 to the girl effect.

We all have a social responsibility to provide an incentive to poor families to send their girls to school please visit www.girleffect.org or www.globalgiving.org.
 
Loathed discrimination
Source : Arab Times  
Date : 2014-12-18
Author : Ali Ahmad Al-Baghli
The Investigation Department in our responsive Ministry of Interior recently announced, through the local newspapers, that it has opened its doors to accept applications for the position of 'investigator'....
Thanks to foxes of money and oil, Al-Assaf and Al-Na'eemi
Source : Arab Times  
Date : 2014-12-18
Author : Ahmed Al-Jarallah
Saudi Finance Minister Ibrahim Al-Assaf deserves appreciation for the ‘dose’ of reassurance that the Saudi and all GCC markets received from him. The state of horror, which overwhelmed these markets...
What's the sudden panic?
Source : Kuwait Times  
Date : 2014-12-18
Author : Badrya Darwish
The most hilarious thing I read this week, guys, was a report that the government, as a result of the drop in oil prices, might need to borrow from the...
Protecting the future generation
Source : Kuwait Times  
Date : 2014-12-18
Author : Labeed Abdal
The Ministry of Health launched an initiative at all hospitals that includes maternity wards on violence against children, which is an important step to protect children at a young stage...
Unrealistic expectations
Source : Arab News  
Date : 2014-12-18
Author : Abdulrahman al-Rashed
To understand the recent changes, we may have to re-evaluate the political and military situation in Syria. We may also have to ask the following question: If Russia hadn't sided...
Women's compulsory happiness
Source : Saudi Gazette  
Date : 2014-12-18
Author : Nawar Fakhry Ezzi
At this time and age in Saudi Arabia, what would a woman's "complete life" look like? The social norms entail that a woman's "ultimate happiness" lies in getting married to...
Saudization is detrimental
Source : Saudi Gazette  
Date : 2014-12-18
Author : Idris Al-Drees
We, the Arabs, are only marginal figures or consumers among the actors that make up modern civilization. This is simply because we have not contributed anything to the creation of...
Might Bashar Assad soon be in the dock?
Source : The Daily Star  
Date : 2014-12-17
Author : Marten Youssef
As Russia attempts to broker peace talks on Syria, it will undoubtedly maintain its support for President Bashar Assad. The probability that Assad's exit would be part of a political...
Iran Nuclear Talks à la Israeli-Palestinian Negotiations
Source : The Counter Punch  
Date : 2014-12-17
Author : Ismael Hossein-zadeh
Soon after the Iran nuclear talks were recently extended for another seven months (beyond the November 22, 2014 deadline), President Rouhani spoke with the Iranian people in a televised address...
What is behind Hamas-Iran rapprochement?
Source : Aljazeera.com  
Date : 2014-12-17
Author : Fatima Ahmad Alsmadi
Can Hamas turn down Iranian calls to renew their ties to their previous level? The answer to this question is one big no. The reason for this is due to...
The Doha summit: Testimony that the GCC has not fragmented
Source : Al Arabiya TV  
Date : 2014-12-17
Author : Raghida Dergham
Signs of pragmatism have emerged in the ranks of the countries of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), which has convened a summit in Doha to agree on shared grounds while...
The Russians will not let go of Assad and neither will we
Source : Al Arabiya TV  
Date : 2014-12-17
Author : Abdulrahman al-Rashed
To understand the recent changes, we may have to re-evaluate the political and military situation in Syria. We may also have to ask the following question: If Russia hadn't sided...
Economic growth impaired by corruption in Arab countries
Source : Oman Daily Observer  
Date : 2014-12-17
Author : Haider Al Lawati
When we examine the score of the Sultanate in the 2014 Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) published by Transparency International based in the German capital Berlin, over the past years, we...
Deceiving unsuspecting patrons
Source : Saudi Gazette  
Date : 2014-12-17
Author : Tariq A. Al-Maeena
The local social media airwaves are buzzing about the speed and alacrity with which the city's municipality has shut down restaurants, cafes and other outlets serving prepared food and has...
Working to pacify Iran
Source : Arab News  
Date : 2014-12-17
Author : Mohammed Fahad Al-Harthi
Iran has historically been the most troublesome country in the region, a chronic spoiler stymieing efforts to bring about political cooperation for everyone's benefit....
Total 200 Results in 14 Pages
  2 
For more news, views and reports about this topic, please subscribe
to GRC website: www.grc.net
Sun Dec 21, 2014| 28-صفر-1436هـ
Qatar-Egypt talks push hailed by KSA 
Bahrain's outlook revised down to negative
ISIS executes 100 foreign fighters for trying to flee Syria
Fitch maintains AA rating for Kuwait
Bahrain detains 5-member terror cell
Oman sovereign fund boosts local stocks
NCB delegation meets Egyptian FM on initiatives for Syria
Oil prices test Iran's support for Syria
Death of key leaders may not finish ISIS
Qatar banks' loan book marginally down in Nov
FNC discusses prevention of family violence
Gulf markets sell-off fuelled by credit and lax regulation
Ban Ki-moon condemns Radaa terrorist attacks
Oil plunge, nuke uncertainty weigh on Iran rial
Saudi forces kill 4 'terrorists'
Dewa hikes 2015 budget to Dh22.87bn
    Newspaper Editorials
Right approach by Palestinians
Improving Kingdom’s education system
More>>  
    Opinions
The Reality of the de Mistura Plan for Syria
South Yemen and the question of secession
More>>  
    GCC Press Agencies
Day's main stories from the GCC Press Agencies
    Reports
More>>  
    Bank Reports
GCC Markets Performance – May 2014
Saudi Arabia: Baseline Macroeconomic Forecast 2014-16
More>>  
    GRC Analysis
Saudi Arabia and the ASEAN Periphery: Cambodia, Myanmar, and Brunei
NATO and the Future of Gulf Security.
Saudi-Vietnam Relations
    GRC Commentary
Price of not heeding Kingdom's advice
On Relations between Rulers and Citizens: The Need for a New Social/Political Contract in the GCC States
Key Issue Facing the Saudi Ruling House.
    GRC Book Review
Beyond Regionalism? Regional Cooperation, Regionalism and Regionalization in the Middle East
India, GCC and the Global Energy Regime: Exploring Interdependence and Outlook for Collaboration.
    GRC Press Release
Gulf Research Center press releases to the media
    GRC Publications
Ethnography, Anthropology and Migration to the Arabian Peninsula: Themes from an Ethnographic Research Trajectory
Can the EU Still Inspire Integration in the Gulf?
Security Dynamics of East Asia in the Gulf Region
    GRC Newsletters/Bulletins

Enter your email to get the Newsletter
Go
      
Privacy Policy | Contact Us | Terms & Conditions | About Us |
Weather | Qibla Directions | Hijri Date Conversion Tool
Full Page :total time:0  |   36-- 36 Middle Page :0  --   | Right : 36 - 36--en--sess-enreq-en-coming