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Bridgette becomes President

“I wanted to show that girls can lead too,” shares Bridgette, a go-getting girl recently elected as School President.

Fourteen-year-old Bridgette lives in Kenya, a country where 40% of the population is under the age of 14 – making room for a whole lot of growth opportunities.

And you’re helping girls grasp them.

In the past, leadership at Bridgette’s school had been male-dominated, and girls didn’t feel comfortable contributing their thoughts and voices.

But now, thanks to your support of Because I am a Girl, girls are tapping into their own talent, and taking charge.

You’re helping to create new school programs, like student governments, that enable youth to take active roles in their education, and feel safe and confident in doing so. Elected officials help bring students’ needs to the attention of administration. Beyond school walls, they’ll even represent their student body at formal community and government meetings – giving them a real chance to make change happen.

And Bridgette set her sights on the highest seat.

“I was inspired to vie for the position of president,” she shares, having enlisted the help of friends to campaign.

Bridgette stands in her schoolyard, wearing her school uniform and smiling at the camera

Bridgette

Bridgette stands at the front of the classroom, addressing her peers who sit in desks and smile back at her.

Bridgette conducts a session with her peers.

It was a tough race, and as one of the first girls to compete for the role, she worried she might miss out, simply because she is a girl. But gender inclusive trainings, her skills and the strength of her leadership, made it easy for peers to recognize her valuable ideas and abilities.

“Creating awareness on children’s right to school can improve lives,” she says, sharing one of her main platform beliefs.

The big day

When election day came, students took the process very seriously.

Crowds lined the school blocks for a chance to make their votes count, inking their fingertips to log their participation. Candidate-appointed delegates accompanied voting stations, supervising proceedings and ensuring all was fair as possible.

Dual panel: a teacher instructs students who gather in a crowd and line up to vote.

Once every ballot was cast and counted, it came time to announce what everyone had been waiting for – and when it came to School President, the decision was clear.

“I was elated to be elected,” Bridgette says with excitement. “It was an achievement for all girls, not just myself.”

Dual panel: older, and younger, girls hold their pinky fingers up and smile.

Girls of all ages show their inked fingerprints with pride, proving they voted!

Leaders like Bridgette are setting a positive example for their peers and paving the way for future generations, showing them anything’s possible.

“Governments should involve girls in leadership,” expresses Bridgette. “I am inspired by prominent local female politicians.”

Already she’s getting things done!

After taking initiative to lead a meeting on the importance of safety, Bridgette motivated parents to put a fence up around the school, protecting children from surrounding wildlife and dangers. She’s also encouraged fellow students to help create a better environment.

“I am happy there are now duty rosters in place for pupils and our compound is clean,” she shares.

Bridgette’s parents are very impressed with and proud of their daughter’s accomplishment. Her father advised her to keep up the hard work, while her mother encouraged her to work even harder.

Bridgette stands outside her classroom, smiling and holding a Plan International sign that says, “I want to be a lawyer.”

Bridgette dreams of becoming a lawyer because she’s driven to fight for people’s rights – “especially women and girls,” she says with determination.

With big goals ahead, hard work is something she’ll have to keep up, but with your support and her dedication, Bridgette’s future is looking bright.

Electing a new chapter of equality

“It’s important for girls to get involved because they have a right to and are capable of becoming leaders,” says the new School President.

She’s passionate about girls “advocating for government to make changes that empower them,” because she knows, when given the chance, “girls can change the world.”


Girls in pink school uniforms, point to the camera and smile.

They want to thank YOU for joining the movement for global gender equality because…

A group of students smile and raise their hands in the air, in celebration.

when you rally behind a girl, everyone wins!

Return to the Because I am a girl project


Project undertaken with the financial support of the Government of Canada.