Global Citizen is a community of people like you

People who want to learn about and take action on the world’s biggest challenges. Extreme poverty ends with you.

Girls & Women

Let's face it

After reading through, join Tamzin Merchant and #showyourselfie for youth.

Let me paint you a picture:

It’s a picture of a person.

A person who can read and write.

A person with hopes, aspirations and talents.

A person who has access to education, healthcare and technology.

Sound like a lot to ask? Like an impossible dream?

The person in the picture is you.

Now let’s multiply you by 1.8 billion.

There are 1.8 billion people on the planet between 10 and 24 years of age. That’s 1 in every 4 in the world.

Just think of the sheer kinetic energy in those 1.8 billion people, think of their collective brainpower, think how loud the laugh of 1.8 billion people together would sound.

It’s 1.8 billion people with the potential to live extraordinary lives.

To live those extraordinary lives, many of the 1.8 billion need support and opportunities that they aren’t getting from their communities or governments. They need access to education, to jobs and to healthcare. They need the things that so many of us have never really stopped to think about, things so simple that we can’t conceive of our own lives lacking them.

Here’s a list of things that change lives for the better:

- a pencil

- a sanitary pad

- a working toilet

- a mosquito net

- a condom

- a TB jab

To one person, just one of the things listed above can make a profound difference to their life. It can even make the difference between life and death.

Did you know that around 175 million young people in poor countries around the world cannot read a full sentence?

Read that sentence again.

Think about it.The challenge of providing healthcare and education to 1.8 billion youth, of teaching 175 million people to read a sentence, might seem daunting or even impossible. But look how far we’ve come:

Since the inception of the Millennium Development Goals over 1 billion people have escaped extreme poverty. Looking back, we can see the enormous strides we have made together towards the improvement of life for millions of humans on the planet.

Looking forward, we see that it is the youth of today who hold the key to tomorrow. And we can help unlock it.

How do we unlock it? It’s simple. We show our faces.

We show our faces to demand human rights for everyone, everywhere.

We show our faces to support the billions of young people who suffer a lack of education.

We show our faces to honour the potential of every young individual on this planet.

We show our faces to demand that politicians making promises, stick to those promises.

We show our faces to ensure that the youth of today will flourish tomorrow.

Taking a selfie might seem like a little thing, but you’ll literally be part of the bigger picture.

Show your face to do a whole world of good: #showyourselfie.

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Tamzin Merchant