Canada consistently ranks high on lists of the best places to live in the world, and now we can say we’re one of the best places for girls globally too.
On a list produced by UK-based organization Save the Children, Canada ranked number 19 out of 144 countries on the Girls’ Opportunity Index. The index ranks countries based on child marriage, adolescent fertility, maternal mortality, female MPs, and lower-secondary school completion.
The US, however, ranks below both Algeria and Kazakhstan at number 32 due to relatively high teen pregnancy and infant mortality rates, as well as a lack of women in government.
Save the Children said Canada also saw its ranking fall due to a lack of female MPs, despite efforts by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to create gender parity within his cabinet.
Australia was another wealthy nation that didn’t rank as well as it could have, because of a low proportion of female MPs and a high rate of teen pregnancies.
In fact, the top countries that scored well for having high numbers of female Members of Parliament were Rwanda, Bolivia, and Spain. Only three of the countries with high proportions of female MPs were wealthier nations – Sweden, Finland, and, again, Spain.
Still, the worst countries in the world to be a girl are all low-income. Niger is one of the worst places globally to be a girl – 76% of girls are married before they were 18, with one in five adolescents giving birth each year.
Save the Children is an advocacy group that runs programs to save children’s lives and challenges government officials to give the children of their nations a brighter future.