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What We’re Watching: Change Makers and Great Videos at the Global Citizen Festival in New York

By Opportunity International

In late September, 60,000 people, including Opportunity supporters from the NYC chapter of Young Ambassadors for Opportunity, descended on Central Park for the largest syndicated charity concert in online and broadcast TV history. The Global Poverty Project‘s Global Citizen Festival brought together change makers with artists such as Neil Young, Crazy Horse, Foo Fighters, The Black Keys, Band of Horses and K’Naan. On the eve of the opening day of the UN General Assembly they urged world leaders and citizens to do more to help end extreme poverty. The idea was simple: by giving every child a chance to thrive, our generation can help end extreme poverty.

YAO-New York treasurer Alexa Chu says:

"I work in public finance making low-income community loans and managing a bond portfolio. The best part of it is enabling U.S. community leaders to do projects that would not be possible otherwise. I’ve always wanted to make a difference beyond my local community.

I recently became involved with Opportunity International through YAO-NY and I volunteered to represent Opportunity at the Global Festival. It was a great way to promote awareness of global poverty and we had the chance to talk about the work of Opportunity and to explain how people could get involved directly. This awareness is a huge stride forward in providing access to basic banking products for many of the severely under-banked areas of the world."

What We’re Watching

Starting last week on World Polio Day, Global Citizen Festival rolled out the short films they showed at the festival on their Facebook page. Two of our favorites are “Primary Education” and “Gender Equality.”

For “Primary Education,” globalcitizen.org reminds us, “Educating a child no matter where they are is one of the biggest steps we can take toward ending extreme poverty.” At Opportunity we couldn’t agree more, which is why we give supporters a number of giving levels to help send a girl to school. Because when you send a girl to school, you give her the chance for a healthier, more hopeful future.

Primary Education:

“Gender Equality” is narrated by Whoopi Goldberg, and produced in partnership with the Half the Sky Movement. It makes sense that if we want to change the world, we need to start by empowering women with economic opportunity. Author Sheryl WuDunn says, “One of the best ways to fight poverty is to educate women and give them economic opportunity. Microfinance institutions are at the center of that solution.” That’s why 93% of Opportunity’s loans go to women. Because when women get a financial opportunity, they are almost three times more likely to reinvest their gains in their children, providing a powerful generational multiplier that accelerates economic growth.

Gender Equality:

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