Ana Maria, 16
“I am trying to keep moving forward, even though the road is not easy. Money is a problem, and I work even though they don’t pay me enough. In my free moments, I make beads out of clay and natural grains so that I can cover some of the costs of my studies.”
“Some days there are no pick-ups, so I have to walk two hours to school, because my school is a bit far,” Ana says. “I know I can do it. I’m going to keep fighting to stay in school.”
“I want to keep studying so I can help my little brother. My education makes me feel powerful.”
“I want to be a teacher. My dream is to prepare children for a better future. I like the profession because it is interactive and creative. In the future I hope to have my own learning center and be able to bring change to my community. My siblings and my mother have been working so that I can continue with my studies.”
“My goal is to be a great designer of traditional clothing. My education will help me achieve this goal as long as I work hard and keep a positive attitude.”
“It makes me sad to see how the kids that have to work don’t have any time to have fun.”
“I encourage all girls, in all parts of the world, who struggle like me to become professionals.”
“I want to work and help my mom, my siblings, and teach what I’ve learned to those who can’t go to school so that they don’t fall behind.”
“In the future, I’d like to be a teacher so that I can give other children a good education.”
Learn more about the Girls’ Voices program and find out how you can get involved here.
Elizabeth Nelson is a wordsmith, an alumna of Aquinas College in Grand Rapids, a four-leaf-clover finder, and a grammar connoisseur. She has lived in west Michigan since age four but loves to travel to new (and old) places. In her free time, she. . . wait, what’s free time?