Muslim girls: 5 ways to move from ‘enough’ to Asiya

Assalamu alaikum:

According to the Girl Scouts Research Institute, girls in the United States care deeply about the world around them and are willing to work for change:
•    For girls ages 11-12, 73% reported improving the world around them as their favorite activity (i.e., activities related to the environment or helping others).
•    Girls ages 11-17 participate in student government at markedly increasing levels: 5% of girls ages 11-13; 12% of girls ages 13-15; and 20% of girls ages 16-17.
•    More young women aged 15 to 25 participate in the following activities than young men: raising money for charity (27% for women vs. 22% for men); regular volunteering for non-political groups (21% vs. 16%); active group membership (22% vs. 18%); membership in political groups (17% vs. 15%); and, participating in a run/walk/ride for charity (20% vs. 15%).

Yet, despite this potential, along with the enormous strides girls and women have made worldwide, we are still living in a time where girls face tremendous challenges, ranging from body issues and bullying to infanticide, sexual violence, and all kinds of discrimination.
For example, even as India and China are becoming economic powerhouses, the centuries-old practice of female infanticide persists, and in some cases has worsened with modernization; preferential treatment for boys over girls leads to all kinds of discriminatory practices across the globe; denial of education, and in extreme cases, even food, in preference for boy children is still practiced in some parts of the world.

In the last few weeks, we have heard the cries of mothers and fathers for their girls – the girls kidnapped by the terrorists of Boko Haram.
As this news fades from the headlines, the cries of these girls continue. And we cannot and must not ignore them.
As the followers of Prophet Muhammad, peace and blessings be upon him, who cherished and valued girls and women, particularly his own four daughters, we are duty-bound to ensure the success of girls at all levels. We must address the struggles at home and abroad that hold women back spiritually, academically, and in all other spheres.
Perhaps we can start with the simple change in attitude Allah calls for when a person greets the news of a baby girl with disappointment: “And when one of them is informed of [the birth of] a female, his face becomes dark, and he suppresses grief. He hides himself from the people because of the ill of which he has been informed. Should he keep it in humiliation or bury it in the ground? Unquestionably, evil is what they decide” (Quran 16:58-59).

Sound Vision Team