Despite having the fifth largest population in the world, Pakistan stands out as a country where the female literacy rate is alarmingly low. According to the Global Gender Gap Report, the country stands at 146th position, with more than 53 percent of women deprived of education, training, and employment.
Recently, this issue was addressed by English Biscuit Manufacturers in an interesting and out-of-the-box way. EBM presented young schoolgirls on leading news channels as newscasters on World Human Rights Day.
They provided a platform for young girls to advocate for their basic right to education and urged parents to send every daughter to school, which can have a valuable impact on society at large.
These girls talked about discouraging societal norms that have hindered their access to education. One of the girls said that they face gender discrimination in all aspects of life. She added that they are not even allowed to think about pursuing education.
They also explained that socio-economic issues are also hurdles for them to receive adequate educational opportunities: “The pre-existing social dogmas that women are not supposed to study but rather focus on being better at household-related chores only have not left society. No matter how much we try, the situation does not change.” said the girls.
The girls have big dreams and are ambitious to achieve success, but are left with grief and sorrow due to the backward thinking of society: “I dream of becoming a teacher or a doctor one day, but every time my parents say they want me to just get married all of my aims get shattered.” expressed one of the girls.
The girls thanked EBM for the efforts they are making to promote young girls’ education and applauded the campaign for giving hope that these prevalent issues related to girls’ education in Pakistan will soon be eradicated.
The Schoolgirl Newscasters campaign bagged immense praise on social media as well and recorded 180 million impressions. The campaign made a significant global impact as it became the first Pakistani campaign ever to win a Cannes Glass Gold Award – widely considered one of the most prestigious awards in advertising. It won a series of international awards, including the D&AD Award, the Caples UK Award, the Dubai Lynx Award, and the Clio Award.
MD and CEO of EBM Dr Zeelaf Munir, while speaking at Cannes, said that this Lion is the making of a better future for millions of girls in Pakistan. She believed that presenting schoolgirls reading the evening news was a great way to bring the spotlight on the change we can achieve through educating the girl child. Dr. Zeelaf Munir added that the award has also emphasized the power of creativity. She acknowledged the partners and the entire EBM team for their noteworthy efforts.
The Schoolgirl Newscasters Campaign is just the beginning of educating society on how educating young girls can be prosperous for the future of the country. Hopefully, EBM’s work will be an inspiration and a new era of purposeful messaging in the campaigns of Pakistan’s corporate sector.
Stay tuned to Brandysnario for more news and updates.