Too Young to Wed (“TYTW”) is thrilled to announce our inaugural Laurel Borowick Grant will be awarded to the grassroots organization Solidarios Sin Fronteras. TYTW will be awarding the organization $10,000 to provide daily breakfasts to 525 schoolgirls in war-torn Yemen, where a looming famine makes child marriage an increasingly attractive option to families desperate for one less mouth to feed.
The United Nations has called the U.S.-backed, Saudi-led war on Yemen the world’s worst humanitarian crisis and a recent study estimated that more than 65% of Yemeni girls are now being married off before 18, compared to 50% before the conflict began.
This special grant, named after dear friend and TYTW’s first major donor, the late Laurel Borowick, will provide emergency assistance and education to girls in humanitarian settings where child marriages are often most common. At 40 cents per meal, this year’s grant will provide girls in need with 25,000 healthy breakfasts over nearly three months, incentivizing parents to value education over early marriage.
“We selected Solidarios Sin Fronteras to be our first Laurel Borowick grant recipient because their compassionate and fearless work in Yemen exemplifies Laurel’s selfless spirit,” said TYTW founder Stephanie Sinclair. “We also believe Yemen must be at the top of the international community’s humanitarian assistance list, as it is ours, because Yemeni girls, in wartime or not, are among the world’s most vulnerable.”
Organizers from Solidarios Sin Fronteras are grateful for the support at such a critical time for Yemen. “We are a very small NGO and we appreciate that Too Young to Wed believes in our work and wants to collaborate,” wrote founders Eva Erill and Noelia Ruiz of Spain and Faten al Osimi of Yemen. “This grant, in Laurel Borowick’s honor, is very special and helping 525 Yemeni girls receive food, education and protection against child marriage is a lovely way to remember her. The children of Yemen need all the support we can offer.”
The Borowick family is equally moved about this partnership in Laurel’s honor. “My mother would have felt honored that this critical work in Yemen is being supported by a grant in her name,” said Jessica Borowick, Laurel’s eldest daughter. “She was passionate about TYTW’s mission and inspired by Stephanie’s leadership and advocacy to protect girls’ rights. Selecting Solidarios Sin Fronteras as the inaugural Laurel Borowick grantee is a beautiful way to acknowledge my mother’s memory and salute her spirit.”