Don't Know Melanne Verveer? Why You Should

Women's empowerment is everybody's business, and the first-ever U.S. Ambassador for Global Women's Issues wants you to know this

What she decides to be: Ambassador Verveer conveyed a choice we make: “to be part of the healing, not the conflict.” She expressed great hope in the diversity, creativity and sincerity of Americans’ engagement with the world, near or far. Kids make a difference, too. When her granddaughter read Three Cups of Tea in sixth grade “She was so taken by this book that she wanted to do more. To touch this generous streak in our young creates habits for the rest of their life.”

Feeling inspired? Here are three easy ways to be part of the solution -- try one!

Watch and learn: Take three minutes to watch The Girl Effect or video clips from 10x10. (Warning: they’ll make you want to do something!) Then support girl power through great organizations like Girl Up, Girls Inc. or the Girl Scouts.

Educate and mentor: You can sponsor a girl’s schooling where it’s desperately needed through Global Giving, Room to Read, Plan USA, and many others. Call your school district, house of worship, or local volunteer organization to serve as a tutor. Vital Voices Global Partnership identifies, trains and mentors women leaders worldwide, or go through a local professional network or university to share your expertise nearby.

Keep girls safe: The Rebecca Project, Tahirih Justice Center and Polaris Project work tirelessly in the U.S. to protect women from gender-based violence and human trafficking -- and they need more help. Through Women for Women International or the Global Fund for Women, you can host an event, volunteer your expertise or support women in war-torn regions to start businesses and rebuild their lives, or simply shop for gifts that will give back.

Ambassador Verveer shared this passionately with me, and now I’m passing it along to you: “Our possibilities for making a difference are only limited by our imaginations.”

What will you do?

Homa Sabet Tavangar is the author of Growing up Global: Raising Children to Be at Home in the World (Ballantine/Random House), a frequent speaker on global perspectives to corporations and K-12 communities, and the mother of three children, ages 7 to 17. Follow her on Facebook and Twitter and visit Growing Up Global.

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