International Day of the Girl Child has been observed on October 11th, since its inception in 2012. The main aim of this day is to highlight and address the needs and challenges faced by girls. At the same time, observing the International Day of the Girl Child hopes to promote the empowerment of girls and to fulfill their human rights.
Observing International Day of the Girl Child supports more opportunity for girls. Across the world, girls face gender inequality in various areas based on their gender. This includes areas such as access to education, nutrition, legal rights, medical care, protection from discrimination and violence against women.
International Day of the Girl Child – the beginning
The idea of observing one day in a year for the girl child began as a project for a worldwide non-governmental organization called Plan International. They wanted to raise awareness of the importance of nurturing girls, globally and particularly in developing countries.
Every year since its inception in 2012, the Day of Girls has a theme.
- 2012: “Ending child marriage”
- 2013: “Innovating for Girls’ Education”
- 2014: “Empowering Adolescent Girls: Ending the Cycle of Violence”
- 2015: “The Power of Adolescent Girl: Vision for 2030”
- 2016: “Girls’ Progress = Goals’ Progress: What Counts for Girls”
- 2017: “EmPOWER Girls: Before, during and after crises”
- 2018: “With Her: A Skilled GirlForce”.
A Skilled GirlForce – 2018
The current generation of girls is getting ready to enter a workforce that is driven by innovation and automation. There is a huge demand for educated and skilled workers, but about a quarter of the young people are currently neither employed nor educated.
This year, International Day of the Girl Child will mark the beginning of a year-long effort to address the most pressing needs and opportunities that girls face while attaining skills for employment.
The vision for the future
The belief, world over, is that adolescent girls have the right to a safe, educated and healthy life. This is not limited to their formative years but should continue till they mature into women. Given the right type of support, these adolescents have the potential to change the world. They can achieve this as empowered girls of today and also as tomorrow’s female workforce.
In the last 15 years or so, the global community has made significant progress in improving the lives of girls during early childhood. The hope is that girls in their first decade of life are more likely to enroll in primary school and receive key vaccinations.