Angel Ortiz knows that the safety, health, and education of girls worldwide is not just a girls’ issue – it is global issue that affects everyone. Three years ago, Angel joined the Girl Up club at Garfield High School in East Los Angeles, California, and he was one of the first males in the club. Today, he is the first male president of the club, and under his leadership, he has recruited 30 club members, 10 of whom are guys! “Men have to help as well,” Angel said. “Working together — that’s how we can really make change.”
At 17 years old, Angel is a strong male role model for his peers and a passionate advocate for girls’ rights. This June, he participated in the Girl Up Leadership Summit, where he lobbied on Capitol Hill and met with Congresswoman Lucille Roybal-Allard to discuss the importance of prioritizing adolescent girls in U.S. foreign policy. Brimming with inspiration from this meeting, he secured another meeting in his home district with his member of Congress to discuss the Girls Count Act of 2013, a bill that will help ensure adolescent girls are counted and supported.
While Angel has encouraged boys in his community to stand up for girls, he knows that there’s more work to be done. With the hopes of expanding male representation in Girl Up clubs, Angel co-led a panel on how to mobilize guys for Girl Up at the SoCal Coalition Local Learning and Leadership Day.
We’re so proud to have a stand-up guy like Angel leading a Girl Up club and we can’t wait to see what he’ll do next!