It’s no secret that Rihanna is one of our heroes. Not only has she received rave reviews for her inclusive lingerie and makeup lines, but she’s also a global ambassador for education. And recently, Rihanna penned an op-ed for The Guardian about the importance of access to education—and everyone should read this.
In the piece, which was published today, September 18th, Rihanna wrote about the more than 250 million children around the world who don’t have access to education, and how it’s all too easy for those of us who did go to school to take it for granted.
Rihanna went on to note that natural disasters, poverty, conflict, and sexism can all keep children out of the classroom, and she emphasized that this is an especially significant problem for girls. She pointed out that for each additional year of primary school, a girl’s potential income increases by 20%. According to the UNESCO Institute for Statistics, 18.5% of girls worldwide were not enrolled in school as of 2016.
The artist continued by writing about her visit to Malawi in 2017 (where she taught math to children), noting that her charity, the Clara Lionel Foundation, has enabled thousands of girls to attend school. However, she noted that there’s still work to be done.
Access to education is critical, and Rihanna’s words are a necessary reminder that more must be done. You can donate to the Clara Lionel Foundation here.