Wikimedia Commons
Wikimedia Commons

Hillary Clinton may have lost the 2016 presidential election but she is still working to break down barriers for women and girls. The former presidential candidate made her first video statement since the inauguration of President Donald Trump and discussed the importance of women’s rights and how women and girls can change the world.

In a video for the 2017 MAKERS Conference, which celebrates through storytelling how far women have come but also shines a light on the issues women and girls still face, Clinton referenced the historic Women’s March that took place last month that “galvanized millions of people” all over the world. Acknowledging the challenges that still remain, Clinton said, “I remain convinced that, yes, the future is female.”

Discussing the conference’s theme of #BeBold, Clinton also encouraged “strong women to step up and speak out.” The former secretary of state continued, “We need you to dare greatly and lead boldly. So please, set an example for every woman and girl out there who’s worried about what the future holds and wonders whether our rights, opportunities and values will endure.”

Clinton ended by sharing a powerful and poignant message for the future. “And remember, you are the heroes and the history makers, the glass ceiling breakers of the future. As I’ve said before, I’ll say again, never doubt that you are valuable and powerful and deserving of every chance and opportunity in the world.”

Women’s rights and opportunity were at the forefront of Clinton’s campaign. The issues she said she would fight for as president included closing the pay gap, making child care affordable, protecting women’s reproductive rights and promoting gender equality worldwide.

Clinton announced last week that she will be releasing a book of personal essays detailing her loss to Trump and sharing inspiring quotes that have gotten her through tough times. She will also be delivering the commencement speech at her alma mater’s graduation ceremony this year.

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Photo credit: Wikimedia Commons