Rihanna just wrote an op-ed about education, and it should be required reading

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 didgo to school to take it for granted.

"Growing up in Barbados, I did not always love school," she admitted. "It can feel like a grind, especially when you’d rather be singing, playing sports or doing pretty much anything other than homework. I realise now that I often took it for granted that I was even able to go to school. Education can be stolen from you in a second."

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. false

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.


"We all have a stake in this," Rihanna wrote. "Imagine a world where millions of children, previously left to fend for themselves, are given the chance to learn. When it comes to helping the world’s poorest children, as well as the communities and societies in which they live, I’m still learning–and I need others to join me on the journey and use their voices alongside mine."

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.

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