Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Joelle O'Reilly-Hyland Discusses Education in Africa

For Joelle O'Reilly-Hyland, it's difficult to overstate the importance of education for women in developing countries. Women who do not have the opportunity to learn and grow are often forced to take menial jobs in their communities, and they're also subjected to a wide array of indignities, including a restriction on voting rights and personal liberties. In her philanthropic work, Joelle O'Reilly-Hyland has seen the impact of education on the lives of women in India. Now, she'd like to do the same for women in Africa.

Many of the philanthropic organizations Joelle O'Reilly-Hyland supports have been working in India for many years, partnering with business and legislative groups to improve access to education for women of all income levels.  Her work has led to a business model that's so effective,she and her colleagues felt it could be applied in other countries, and they focused on Africa based on the dire need for education in that country. Very few African women are provided with the opportunity to go to school, and the literacy rates in that country are incredibly low as a result. Health care outcomes in Africa are also poor, and it's quite possible that poor education levels are also to blame for those statistics as well.

Joelle O’Reilly Hyland points over interested citizens to the http://www.halftheskymovement.org/ which was inspired by the book of the same title written by Nicholas Kristof Sheryl WuDunn which catalogues both the oppression of and opportunity for women in places such as Africa. 

By working hard to educate the next generation of women in Africa, Joelle O'Reilly-Hyland hopes to spark a sea change when it comes to women's rights on the continent. Women have a valuable contribution to make to the future health of Africa, and Joelle O'Reilly-Hyland wants to help those women make their voices heard.