– Educate Girls USA names Phyllis Kurlander Costanza, Head UBS in Society and CEO UBS Optimus Foundation, to its Charity Board

– New appointment will lift girls’ education higher on the agenda of global leaders, said Founder, Safeena Husain

– Educate Girls USA supports organizations that champion gender-equitable education, enabling out-of-school girls to return to quality classrooms

NEW YORK, Feb. 4, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — Educate Girls USA, a non-profit organization that mobilizes resources to support girls’ education in rural and educationally marginalized areas, today announced the appointment of Phyllis Kurlander Costanza, Head UBS in Society and CEO UBS Optimus Foundation, to its USA Charity Board.

Newly Appointed Board Member, Educate Girls USA
Newly Appointed Board Member, Educate Girls USA

The appointment will further strengthen the organization’s North American presence and increase expertise in international development. Educate Girls USA works closely with its partners in India, including Foundation to Educate Girls Globally, Sol’s ARC, and Transform Schools – People for Action. Those organizations have enrolled over 1 million previously out-of-school girls into public schools over the years and have helped more than 1 million additional children improve their learning outcomes.

The appointment comes as the global pandemic reveals many social inequalities – especially around gender and public education, and the urgent need to address them. The United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) provide an essential framework to addressing those inequalities. SDG 4, for example, ensures inclusive and equitable quality education and promoting learning opportunities. SDG 5 aims to achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls.

On the global development agenda, Educate Girls USA’s Board promotes girls’ education, gender equity, global education and policy, philanthropy, international financing and research. It also raises essential funding for programs in India.

Phyllis Kurlander Costanza, the most recent member to join the board, brings extensive experience in global philanthropy, having grown UBS Optimus Foundation into a world-leading organization dedicated to finding innovative ways to tackle some of the world’s most pressing social and environmental issues.

At UBS Optimus, she led the introduction of innovative financing vehicles like the first Development Impact Bond (DIB) in education. Having previously held a leadership role at the Children’s Investment Foundation she has also demonstrated a long-held commitment to addressing the challenges children face when living in poverty.

She said: “Educate Girls has a uniquely successful track record in addressing the needs of society’s neediest and most vulnerable. I’m looking forward to supporting Educate Girls’ expansion.”

Announcing the appointment, Educate Girls USA’s Founder, Safeena Husain, said, “We are extremely excited to have Phyllis join our board in the USA. Phyllis and I have worked together for a number of years and I have always been truly inspired by her deep understanding of issues faced by some of the world’s poorest people, and her incredible passion to direct more and better resources to innovative community-based organizations. With the USA board’s expert advice and outreach, we hope to bring the vital importance of girls’ education higher up the agenda of global leaders. Together, we will ensure that the goal to get every girl in school is fully funded and won!”

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