On October 11, the International Day of the Girl Child is celebrated globally and annually to empowers girls and amplifies their voices. The day honors the value, strength, and potential of girls throughout the world. It’s a day to call attention to girls’ needs and the issues they face and to mobilize efforts to meet those needs and fulfill their rights. International Day of the Girl Child is also known as the Day of Girls and the International Day of the Girl.
International Day of the Girl Child, like its adult counterpart, International Women’s Day (held on March 8) recognizes the importance, power, and potential of teenage girls by advocating the creation of greater opportunities for them. Simultaneously, this day is allocated to address gender-based inequalities that young girls face around the world, such as child marriages, limited educational chances, violence, and discrimination.
Today we are celebrating International Day of Girl Child, 2021. Hence, let’s have a look at its history, significance, and some famous quotes and alarming facts about girl child.
History of the International Day of the Girl Child
The Beijing Declaration, issued in 1995 at the World Conference on Women in Beijing, was the first to advocate for women’s and girls’ rights. It was the first plan in the history of the world to recognize the necessity to address difficulties faced by adolescent girls all over the globe.
On December 19, 2011, the United Nations General Assembly passed Resolution 66/170 declaring October 11 as International Day of the Girl Child. Thus, on October 11, 2012, the first International Day of the Girl Child was marked on the grave issue of child marriages, with the theme “Ending Child Marriage.” After that, every year on 11 October, this day is celebrated with full conviction to break the cycle of discrimination and violence against girls and also to empower them to become independent, strong women of tomorrow.
Significance of the International Day of the Girl Child
This day emphasizes the importance of addressing the issues that girls experience, as well as promoting girls’ empowerment and the realization of their human rights. UN bodies are dedicated to celebrating this day to guarantee that all girls have access to high-quality education and a better and more dignified life.
Girls can transform the world if they are adequately supported during their adolescent years, both as empowered girls today and as of tomorrow’s strong leaders, entrepreneurs, mentors, mothers, etc. Investing in teenage girls’ power today protects their rights and ensures a more fair and prosperous future. If rightly guided and empowered, girls can play an equally important role in addressing climate change, political conflict, economic growth, illness prevention, and global sustainability.
Some Famous Quotes on Girl Child
● “When girls are educated, their countries become stronger and more prosperous.” -Michelle Obama
● “When women participate in the economy, everyone benefits.” – Hillary Clinton
● “A girl child who is even a little bit educated is more conscious of family planning, health care and, in turn, her children’s own education” – Azim Premji
● “Women’s empowerment is intertwined with respect for human rights”. -Mahnaz Afkhami
Some Alarming Facts on Girls and Women
● One out of every five females is married or in union before reaching the age of 18. In the least developed countries, that number gets more than double, with 40% of females marrying before the age of 18, and 12% marrying before the age of 15.
● 96 percent of those trafficked for sexual exploitation are girls and women.
● Every year, an estimated 340,000 girls and young women are infected with HIV, with more than 3 million girls and young women living with HIV worldwide.
● Around 44% of 15 to 19-year-old females believe it is acceptable for a husband to beat his wife.
● Girls who are aged 5-14 years work for more than 28 hours per week, which is more than twice as much as males.
All these data indicate how crucial it is to address issues related to girls and women. International Day of the Girl Child helps in recognizing all these issues and works towards empowerment and equal rights of the girl child. Girls can evolve into limitless, intelligent women of the future if they are empowered at a young age and this will be a win for society.