Interesting Insta: Michelle in Morocco

“Interesting Insta” is a blog post series that exhibits my shameless love for Instagram with some cross-cultural context. #Enjoy!

As most of us are aware, First Lady Michelle Obama’s own Let Girls Learn initiative has been an overwhelming success in a number of Peace Corps countries. However, she’s eager to do more (because she’s amazeballs). Along with her daughters, mother, Meryl Streep, and Freida Pinto, FLOTUS traversed to Liberia, Morocco, and Spain on her mission to “let girls learn.”

During her two-day swing through Morocco, she provided details of the nearly $100 million being donated to girls’ education by the foreign aid agency, Millennium Challenge Corporation. Aides said the money will broadly be used for mentoring programs, internships, after-school clubs, upgraded girls’ bathrooms, and gender-responsive training for teachers. Obama also plans to make Morocco the 36th Let Girls Learn country, which is awesome for both the girls, and for incoming Peace Corps Volunteers like me! She also discussed a sum of $400,000 from the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) that will be used to build five girls’ dormitories.

According to the CIA’s World Factbook, the literacy rate for 15-year-old Moroccans is 79 percent for males and 59 percent for females. School attendance by girls in Morocco plummets after primary school, especially in rural areas, where they are often forced to work as maids or farmhands. Not only does educating girls help the girls themselves, but studies show that girls’ education enriches those around them, too. Educated girls earn higher salaries, help increase a country’s GDP, marry later, and are less likely to contract malaria and HIV.

On FLOTUS’s personal Instagram page, she posted a number of photos depicting her time in Morocco with Streep and Pinto. Plus, her interview with Moroccan girls and personal account of her time in Liberia, Morocco, and Spain are exceedingly inspiring reads. I’m going to miss calling her my First Lady!


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