The story of how 18-year-old Natasha Madorsky became a speaker at an international girls rights conference can be traced back several years to a serendipitous hometown connection.
Madorsky, who grew up in the Cleveland suburbs, was reading in a United Nations newsletter about its nascent Girl Up organization when she saw that the story had featured a girl from a nearby school.
Girl Up, a campaign of the United Nations Foundation, advocates on behalf on an estimated 600 million adolescent girls living in developing counties by empowering American girls to become part of the solution.
The coincidence of the article was striking to Madorsky, given the worldwide reach of the United Nations and her strong belief in the power of education.
Girl Up supports schools in poor sections of the world by providing educational materials, mending schoolhouses and teaching.
She joined Girl Up soon thereafter.
An eye on education
Madorsky today is part of a select group of Girl Up teen advisors and was handpicked by the organization to speak in June to 100 supporters at the annual Girl Up Leadership Summit in Washington D.C. She spoke during a panel discussion on fundraising and was interviewed before an audience about ways girls can forge stronger connections to the U.N.
Her view on education has been shaped by what she’s learned while participating in Model U.N. and living in Cleveland Heights, Ohio.
“I see a lot of people around me not really taking advantage of the education they could be having so I’ve had to be very self-motivating in getting a great education,” said Madorsky, who graduated high school this year.
Madorsky said she began to see education as an economic determinant while representing Senegal during a statewide Model U.N. conference.
She proposed that Senegalese parents receive financial incentives for enrolling their daughters in school after learning that many girls work full-time jobs instead.
Madorsky’s interest in world events influenced her decision to attend Princeton University in the fall to study international affairs with a focus on Middle Eastern politics.
She also hopes to maintain her connection to Girl Up by joining the Youth Champions, an elite tier of Girl Up supporters aged 18-24 who are highly engaged spokespeople for the campaign and help teach new audiences about Girl Up.
“I hope that I can be a Girl Up point person for the New York area,” Madorsky said. “That would be great.”Tags: Business,Education,Giving,Leadership,Lifestyle