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.
 
Return of His Majesty
Source : Oman Daily Observer  
Date : 2015-03-26
Author : Mohammed Al Balushi
"With the grace of Allah, His Majesty Sultan Qaboos will be reaching to homeland from Germany, today evening", the message read from different social networks. A friend stated nervously "I...
What have oil prices got to do with teapots?
Source : Arab Times  
Date : 2015-03-26
Author : Ali Ahmad Al-Baghli
Although all indicators show the oil price will continue its downward trend, we don't see any glimmer of hope from the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) to reduce their...
Carpet Beating
Source : Kuwait Times  
Date : 2015-03-26
Author : Dr Hassan Jouhar
According to Kuwaiti traditions, whenever dust accumulates on a rug or a carpet, it is usually hung on a roof rail and dusted with a carpet beater to remove the...
The undiplomatic diplomat
Source : Arab News  
Date : 2015-03-26
Author : Sabria S. Jawhar
Swedish Foreign Minister Margot Wallstrom's remarks about Islam and Saudi Arabia's domestic policies should be an object lesson for every government up-and-comer who hopes to carve out a career in...
Too early to draw conclusions
Source : Arab News  
Date : 2015-03-26
Author : Abdulrahman al-Rashed
It is unusual for the Iranian regime to publicize its military and security leaders despite the many wars it has been involved in during the last three decades. This is...
A Yemen deal needs a U.N. stick to enforce it
Source : Al Arabiya TV  
Date : 2015-03-25
Author : Manuel Almeida
With Ansarullah's move toward south Yemen gathering pace by the day, the Aden-based government of the beleaguered President Abd Mansour Hadi has been desperate for military assistance. Rumors that Hadi...
The dream of an empire...
Source : Gulf Daily News  
Date : 2015-03-25
Author : Yenus S
The much awaited Iraqi invasion and 'liberation' of the city of Tikrit by Iraqi forces seems to have been aborted. The 30,000-plus Iraqi, Iranian and Shi'ite militias have failed to...
Prepare for the Yemeni Storm
Source : Asharq Al-Awsat  
Date : 2015-03-25
Author : Mshari Al-Zaydi
What is currently happening in Yemen is not the first problem Saudi Arabia has faced with respect to its neighbor to the south. But the current problems don't just concern...
Solid security, high judiciary
Source : Arab Times  
Date : 2015-03-25
Author : Ahmed Al-Jarallah
The judicial authority issued a statement that comforted Kuwaitis, because if this institution is shaken, it means Kuwait is in jeopardy. Also, we say 'well done' to the Interior Ministry...
Egypt revs-up for the fast lane
Source : Arab Times  
Date : 2015-03-25
Author : Khalaf Ahmed Al Habtoor
As someone who is seriously looking at investment possibilities in Egypt, I took a close interest in the country's three-day-long Economic Development Conference, recently held in the resort town of...
Money Addiction
Source : Kuwait Times  
Date : 2015-03-25
Author : Mudaffar Abdullah
Where are we socially heading? The numbers declared by the justice ministry's verdict execution official about issuing arrest and summon orders for over KD 1,836,000 worth of financial claims, travel...
Jumping into the wrong wagon
Source : Kuwait Times  
Date : 2015-03-25
Author : Abdellatif Al-Duaij
Some patriotic or democratic activists, who did not get involved in political action, jumped into the wrong wagon and sided with backward groups who are active today, or they followed...
With Houthi coup, Yemen moves closer to civil war
Source : Saudi Gazette  
Date : 2015-03-25
Author : Dr. Ali Al-Ghamdi
The Houthis emerged as a religious-cultural movement founded by their leader Hussein Al-Houthi in the early 1990s. They represented the Zaidi branch of Shia Islam, which is considered to be...
A month of significance
Source : Saudi Gazette  
Date : 2015-03-25
Author : Tariq A. Al-Maeena
If the month of March has some significance for the region, then it should be remembered as the month that US forces under the command of President George W. Bush...
Yemen: Another civil war
Source : Arab News  
Date : 2015-03-25
Author : Gwynne Dyer
The last American troops are being pulled out of Yemen after Al-Qaeda fighters stormed a city near their base on Friday. Houthi rebels who have already overrun most of the...
Total 200 Results in 14 Pages
  2 
For more news, views and reports about this topic, please subscribe
to GRC website: www.grc.net
Sat Mar 28, 2015| 07-جماد ثاني-1436هـ
Yemeni FM says Iranian forces were aiding Houthis
Kuwait woos German investors
Saudi, Sweden discuss bilateral ties after diplomatic row
Qatar's economic growth to be 4pc in 2015-18: S&P
Saudis led from the front: Ahmad Assiri
UAE, Belgium boost relations
Houthis' air defences hit, UAE warplanes take part in blitz
Riyadh governor to open STTIM
France says Iran needs to compromise more
Gulf economies can cope with Yemen conflict
Egypt, Bahrain discuss 'Operation Decisive Storm'
GCC's tourist outflow to Europe and Asia increases
US allies conduct 16 air strikes in Syria, Iraq
Dairy production in KSA needs SR15 billion investment by 2020
Assad says 'open' to dialogue with US
UN chief to discuss Yemen with King Salman at Arab summit
    Newspaper Editorials
American troops are vital to shore up Afghanistan's army
Riddles in the air
More>>  
    Opinions
Why Operation Decisive Storm was needed in Yemen
'Decisive Storm' contains threat
More>>  
    GCC Press Agencies
Day's main stories from the GCC Press Agencies
    Reports
Iranian Nuclear Program Negotiations : What Next?
More>>  
    Bank Reports
Saudi Arabia Banking Sector
GCC Equity Monitor - Global
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
Evaluating Financial Literacy Training for Migrant Workers in the Gulf
The Socio-Political Background and Stakes of ‘Saudizing’ the Workforce in Saudi Arabia: the Nitaqat Policy
Current Progress in the Nationalisation Programmes in Saudi Arabia
    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