They’re making sure young girls have adequate representation!
Shonda Rhimes and Pat McGrath are getting their own Barbies in honor of International Women’s Day, The Grio reports.
Mattel recently announced their Barbie Role Models campaign, an initiative aimed at “inspir[ing] the next generation of leaders and dreamers,” set to drop in honor of International Women’s Day. The campaign is an extension of Barbie’s “Dream Gap Project,” which sheds light on statistics that say girls start to develop self-limiting beliefs at as young as 5-years-old. Barbie hopes to change those statistics by providing more women role model dolls which researchers say can aid in girls becoming more confident and assertive. Since 2018, Barbie has committed one million dollars to nonprofits committed to advancing gender equality starting with young girls.
The new Barbie Role Models campaign highlights 12 global leaders and changemakers who are pioneers or trailblazers in their fields, spotlighting women across tech, wellness, STEM, education and more. Included in the honorees who will receive Barbie dolls in their likeness are television producer Shonda Rhimes and beauty maven and makeup artist Pat McGrath.
“We know that children are inspired by what they see around them, which is why it’s so important for young girls to see themselves reflected in role models who’ve daringly pushed past roadblocks and overcome the Dream Gap to become the brave women they are today. This International Women’s Day, we’re proud to honor 12 global trailblazing women to help empower the next generation of female leaders by sharing their stories, said Lisa McKnight, senior VP and global head of Mattel’s Barbie and Dolls.
Rhimes spoke about the recognition, saying that she felt it was important because every dream starts with your imagination. By providing adequate representation for young girls through the medium of dolls, Rhimes believes the imagination expands and makes way for little girls to dream big.
“The idea that there are dolls out there that can look like you and feel like you and give you the ability to imagine yourself in a different world, in a different way, in a way that maybe you only secretly dreamed, or thought was impossible in real life, I think that is incredibly important. As a storyteller, I think everything begins with your imagination. The way that you begin to imagine yourself really does start the story of who you are as a person…It’s obvious to me that you cannot be what you cannot see. And if you don’t see anybody who looks like you, who seems like you, who does anything like you, then you start to believe that you can’t do it either,” explained Rhimes.
Rhimes and McGrath join 10 other Barbie honorees including Ari Horie, founder and CEO of Women’s Startup Lab, Melissa Sariffodeen, CEO and co-founder of Canada Learning Code, Adriana Azuara, founder of All4Spas, Doani Emanuela Bertain, teacher and founder of Sala 8, Jane Martino, chair and co-founder of Smiling Minds, Chinese fashion designer Lan Yu, Butet Manurung, founder and director of SOKOLA, Sonia Peronaci, founder of the Italian food website GialloZafferano, Tijen Onaran, CEO and founder of Global Digital Women and Lena Mahfouf, a digital creator, videographer and author.
In addition to the Barbie dolls, the brand will also be celebrating International Women’s Day through a number of other initiatives including a Barbie Dream Gap Project partnership with Inspiring Girls International, a charity committed to raising the aspirations of young girls by connecting them with women role models. As well as the launch of BarbieStyle’s first ever collaborative shopping platform curated with diverse, women-founded brands, and a Barbie NFT art collection drop in collaboration with Boss Beauties, a woman-led global initiative aimed at creating innovative opportunities for women and girls.
Barbie is working hard to lead the charge on eradicating gender inequality, starting in childhood, taking to social media to share the new upcoming campaign.
“Barbie is dedicated to helping build the confidence and reinforce the limitless potential of girls everywhere…we are continuing our commitment to closing the Dream Gap by inspiring girls around the world to dream big and reminding them they can be anything,” the company wrote.
Because as Rhimes stated previously, "you cannot be what you cannot see."
Photos Courtesy of Tyler Twins for Variety; Mattel