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A Girl's Better Half

It takes a lot of courage to be a whole girl. I discovered that a long time ago.

Have you ever wondered which was your better half? The upper or the lower body?

Between understanding all abouta girl'smenstruationcycle and seeingher breasts growing, there were always two sides to the story of being a girl.

After all, onehalf is visible and the otherhalf is not. Both are very important and both sides own their specific taboos. Both are deeply involved and affected by the menstruation cycle, both are involved in adolescence and puberty and both are important in sexual health and reproductive health dialogues.

Today is as good a time as any, togive some thoughtabout how a girl feels when only half of her bodyisin the spotlight. Especially since two halves do make a whole andboth halves shouldmatter at all given times.

With or without them, breasts are an integralpart of being a girl. They are visible indicators of adolescence and of developing as a girl and becoming a woman, regardless ofshape orsize. They are also the natural source of food for the newborn and most of all, they sit close to our hearts.

For me, at age 9 and before I could even understand my menstruation cycle, my breasts were already sitting there on my chests, saying \"hey girl, here we are\". It was a difficult time. I was also the smallest girl in my group, with the most visible breasts. So I was considered a \"bigger girl\".

In the context of discussions surrounding thedignity for girls, it is time to bring the breasts into the global health agenda.Especially as it relates to global goals and the SDG agenda.

At Ms. Brafit we have designed, developed and successfully delivered education and breast-health solutionsas tools for delivering dignity to girls and women.There is nothing more empowering than a good fitting bra. This delivers loads of confidence to women and girls no matter the age, size and shape. What can be better than a little bit of dignity andsecurity behind closed bras?

Our work and mission at Ms. Brafit continues to focus around the bra, breast healthand education,to enable girls to better appreciate andunderstand their bodies. With ourfocus on the bra as a catalyst for social change; this makes a world of difference to every girl we meet.

After all, wecan allembracehealth and self-esteembenefits of being comfortable, secure and supported!

Ms. Brafit is so humbled to be able to reachthe milestonesof sharing our universal breast-care model with so many communities and it is critical to keep the spotlight on healthy breasts as part of the discussions about being a girl from top to bottom and head to toe!

Please join us in our campaign for the#WholeGirlMovement bycommitting to making girls feel whole with our programs at Ms. Brafit-viaourTwo Cups of Care social engagement.

Like so many girls, I felt scaredand a little lost about understanding the connection between my upper and lower halves. Once I was more aware, it propelled me to become a change maker and focus on all the aspects of the female body in a positive light. For me, it started with my bra!

Our work has been presented to audiences in the Caribbean, North America, South America, South Africa and Swaziland and we have presented to global audiences via many speaking opportunities with global associates.

Ms. Brafit CEO Nicole Joseph-Chin is a Vital Voices - VV Lead Fellow and recipient of US State Department IVLP 2011- Women And Entrepreneurship.

Girl Power
Latin America and the Caribbean
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