United Nations Women Empowerment Summit’s ‘Girl Up’ segment has chosen three Indian American teens – Kavita Rai, Anusha Tandon, and Ina Bhoopalam – among 24 teenage girls as advisers. They are going to Washington D.C. for the upcoming event.
These girls belong to different parts of the US—Rai is from Camillo in California, Tandon is from Acton, Massachusetts and Bhoopalam from Lincoln in Nebraska.
Rai, who is 16 years old, believes, “It’s important not to live in a bubble.” She adds that she wants to bring a difference to other girls as well, Camarillo Acorn reported.
Girl Up is an empowerment campaign of the United Nations Foundation. At the summit, that will go on between July 8 and 11, these teens will speak on issues facing girls and women.
The teens “share the common goal of supporting girls around the world and achieving global gender equality,” spokesperson Beth Nervig said.
Through local Girl Up clubs, participants “have helped us raise more than $8 million for our partner United Nations programs since Girl Up began” in 2010, Nervig said. A total of 400 girls from 17 states and five countries who are active participants of Girl Up applied to become teen advisers.
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“It’s important not to live in a bubble." @GirlUp Teen Advisor Kavita Rai is flying across the country to attend this year's Leadership Summit! ✈️Check out her story: via @CamarilloAcorn https://t.co/c7SMcHPeQR pic.twitter.com/ec3L8nnUhY
— Girl Up (@GirlUp) June 16, 2018
Rai, who is now a senior at Newbury Park School, started a Girl Up chapter at her school around two years ago. She mentioned, “advocacy for women’s rights has been a passion of mine for years now”. She is also a part of YMCA Youth & Government where she loves to discuss issues such as prison reform, gun control and women’s reproductive rights.
“I helped found a club in my middle and high school, and have taken leadership roles ever since. It feels like I have grown so much over the years, and I’ve loved seeing the amazing women in my club grow up along with me,” – Anusha Tandon
Tandon, who is 17 and a senior at Acton-Boxborough Regional High School, joined Girl Up when she was in sixth grade. She wanted to use her voice to help people around the world.
“I was enticed by Girl Up’s unique format that allows girls to be at the forefront of change, because I had never seen a campaign that was basically run by girls,” she said on her Girl Up bio page.
“I helped found a club in my middle and high school, and have taken leadership roles ever since. It feels like I have grown so much over the years, and I’ve loved seeing the amazing women in my club grow up along with me,” she added.
Student at East High School in Lincoln, Bhoopalam is a self-proclaimed activist and advocate. “I couldn’t be more excited and honored to serve as an Advisor for the 2018-2019 term,” she said in her Girl Up bio.
“My experience with Girl Up starts a little over a year ago, when I made a promise to myself that I would no longer stay silent in the face of so many problems,” she added. “I heard about Girl Up from a friend then and it immediately caught my interest – Girl Up embodied my core values and gave me the chance to stand up for what I most strongly believe in.”
Nervig spoke about how the Girl Up program works in collaboration with the UN and said, “We partner with the United Nations in six countries on programming that helps ensure girls have access to education, health care, and are safe getting to and from school.”