This fundraiser closed about 1 month ago
Hello! This year, I am using my birthday on June 6, as a
platform to raise funds for More Than Me (MTM)- an organization I
hold deep respect and admiration, for its amazing and unique work in West
Point, Liberia, rescuing and working with sexually trafficked girls. Liberia is a post-war country in West Africa and More Than Me operates in its capital; Monrovia- named after U.S. ex-president James Monroe.
Who am I? My name
is Deborah Dauda. I am a Nigerian-American, an artist, educator and activist
passionate about using the Arts as a conduit for social change. I am inspired by the lives of women and
children around the world who find strength in adversity, and I am motivated to
fight for the rights of women and children by experiences growing up in
Nigerian and living here in the U.S. As a public health professional with a
background in African studies and international development from the UCLA
Fielding School of Public Health and the International Institute, the
intersections of education, health, sexual violence and economic mobility of
young women couldn't be clearer- and this is why I believe in, and support the
work of More Than Me in West Point, Liberia.
Why Do I want to Focus on Girls
Education in Liberia?
In 2009, while studying abroad at the University of Ghana,
Legon, I had the privilege of meeting and working with Liberians both on the
school's campus and on Buduburam refugee camp. Through my interactions with young
girls on the camp, I gained a deeper appreciation of Liberia's social history but
was appalled by the low educational attainment, and high pregnancy rates (many
of which occurred through sexual violence and rape) of these girls.
Although the government of Liberia has a national policy for girl's education, there are still gaps between policy and practice. The work of More Than Me is instrumental in bridging this gap by eliminating gender disparity and increasing the social inclusion of girls in Liberia. The totality of Liberia's vibrant culture and social fabric can only be realized when girls have free access to education, safe space and protection, leadership opportunities and a VOICE through More Than Me.
I am More Than Me, and I hope you are too!