Will the Trump Administration Let Girls Learn, or End One of Philanthropy’s Most Successful Campaigns?

Confusion reigns in Trumpland. And lack of awareness in decision-making appears to be rampant in the Trump Administration.

The latest example is the Trump Administration’s internal memo ending “Let Girls Learn,” Michelle Obama’s signature philanthropic endeavor. On May 1st, CNN opened up the can of worms with the headline, “Trump administration memo calls for ending Michelle Obama’s girls education program.” Hours later, CNN would post another headline, “Despite memo, White House says Michelle Obama program unchanged.”

“The Administration supports policies and programs to empower adolescent girls, including efforts to educate them through the completion of secondary school,” said Heather Nauert, of the Trump Administration’s State Department, referring to Let Girls Learn. “We are committed to empowering women and girls around the world and are continuing to examine the best ways to do so.”

Hmmmm. Confused much?

Let Girls Learn was a collaboration with the Peace Corp, which, because of its branding, “enabled the Peace Corps to raise $3 million in funding for Let Girls Learn in a year and a half,” said Tina Tschen, Michelle Obama’s former chief of staff.

The name of the program itself, the branding, is an important part of the strategy. Ending the name will seriously disable the program.

I wonder what they will change the name to. Keep Girls Down? Shut Girls Up? Let Girls Die?

Would be funny if it weren’t so scary.

 

Kiersten Marek

Author: Kiersten Marek

Kiersten Marek, LICSW, is the founder of Philanthropy Women. She practices clinical social work in Cranston, Rhode Island, and writes about how women donors and their allies are advancing social change.

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