Ahead of her keynote at SXSW, the First Lady's office announced the release of the song, "This Is for My Girls," penned by Diane Warren and featuring the likes of Zendaya, Missy Elliott, Kelly Clarkson, and more.
"Diane Warren and this collective of powerful, talented artists have truly taken action in support of Let Girls Learn,” Obama said in a release. “I am thrilled that they’ve created this anthem for the 62 million girls around the world who are not in school."
The song, created in partnership with AOL's Makers and available on iTunes, will be performed live by Chloe x Halle for the first time during Obama's SXSW panel today at 11:30 a.m ET and streamed live on Makers.com. All proceeds from the purchase of "This Is for My Girls" will support the Peace Corps. Let Girls Learn Fund, which seeks to help the more than 62 million girls around the world who are not in school go to school and stay in school.
However, in an essay penned for Lena Dunham's Lenny newsletter, Obama explains how the organization's mission extends well beyond that. "It's also very much about attitudes and beliefs," she writes, citing how girls are valued for their bodies, not their minds; aren't deemed worthy of an education; and how their best chance in life is to be married off at a young age. "Just imagine for a moment what it's like to be in their shoes," she says. "...Think about who—and what—you would be today if your formal education had ended after middle school and you knew only what you'd learned through eighth grade. It's inconceivable, right?"
Yet for millions of girls—62 million to be exact—that inconceivable notions is a reality. Join the fight now on 62MillionGirls.com and pledge to take action to help girls worldwide to go to school, plus find resources for educating yourself and others, as well as ideas on how you can make the most impact. "Against the most heartbreaking odds, these girls never lose hop in themselves," Obama writes. "The least we can do is give them a chance to go to school, fulfill that hope, and become who and what they are meant to be."