Help Children in Poverty Reach their Potential

Phirdous grew up poor in a vertical slum — in a tiny, open-air, one-room apartment — in Kolkata, India. Her family struggled to makes ends meet, so her parents often left the city in search of work, leaving Phirdous in the care of her aunt and grandmother.

Many children born into poverty remain mired in it their entire lives, leading families to marry off their girls at a young age, often while they are still children. Phirdous was determined that wouldn't be her story.

At just 9 years old, she eagerly joined Children International's Youth Health Corps, where she learned about reproductive health and how to care for others. As Phirdous's knowledge grew, so did her confidence. So when a marriage was arranged for her at just 15, she fought back — and won. Today, the family who wanted to push her into early marriage fully supports her plan to attend college and study education.

Phirdous is just one of millions of children who need empowerment to pave their way out of poverty. While global poverty has declined precipitously in the last few decades, 400 million children still live in extreme poverty. Phirdous's story shouldn't be the exception. Every child deserves the same opportunities, without the constraints of poverty or threats of early marriage derailing them.

The struggles of children like Phirdous are too easily and too often overlooked … their voices too often silenced. We can't let the world keep failing them.

Add your name to raise awareness about global child poverty and support programs that ensure every child gets the resources to learn, grow and reach their potential.
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