In honor of this awesome day, I'm going to tell you the story of how I became a feminist activist.
When I was 9 years old, I read Half the Sky by Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn (I stole it from my mom's bookshelf) and I was horrified by the ways women and girls were treated in developing countries. I never knew that women weren't equal to men in many places and I couldn't for the life of me figure out why! However, even with this epiphany, I didn't know how to get involved with this issue.
I applied to become a Teen Advisor for Girl Up in 2012, and was selected with 20 other girls to be a part of the 2013-2014 class of Teen Advisors when I was 13 (wow still fetus Jules)! I was able to work with a bunch of incredible teenage girls whom I look up to SO much. In this position, I attended the Social Good Summit as a Teen Reporter, advocated for the Girls' Count Act on Capitol Hill (a bill that makes it mandatory for girls in developing countries to receive birth certificates, which, thanks to the incredible power of girls, was signed into law in 2014), met Malala Yousafzai and interviewed her for ABC News with Diane Sawyer, hosted a panel at my school with Elizabeth Plank, Ruthie Ackerman, Rachel Wisthuff, and Elisa Kreisinger (this panel was about how to get teenage girls involved in advocacy), attended the premiere of He Named Me Malala at the Ziegfeld (which was absolutely incredible and I wrote a blog post about it a couple of weeks ago), saw Michelle Obama speak at the Apollo Theatre about the importance of girls' education, attended the launch of the No Ceilings campaign with Hillary Clinton (and asked her a question!!), worked at the 5 Year Girl Up Anniversary (where I took a picture with Nigel Barker), and way more amazing things thanks to the incredible organization that is Girl Up.
Girls will change the world, I promise.