UN International Day of the Girl
Since 2012, October 11 has been marked as the International Day of the Girl. . The theme for 2022 is “Digital generation. Our generation.” It provides a platform for the global community to understand the disadvantages girls face.
This day aims to highlight and address the needs and challenges girls face, and to promoting girls’ empowerment and the fulfillment of their human rights. Progress for adolescent girls has not kept pace with the realities they face today. Inequality of girl children is a vast worldwide problem which includes many areas like inequality in education, nutrition, legal rights, medical care, protection, honor, and child marriage among others. Adolescent girls have the right to a safe, educated, and healthy life, not only during these critical formative years, but also as they mature into women. In the United States where we have made progress in empowering girls, the patriarchal nature of society still fosters the perception that women are less competent than men and second to them. Fewer women in positions of power at all levels, pay inequality, and sexual abuse at the workplace all testify to the fact that there is still a lot to be done to change ingrained beliefs and attitudes hiding beneath surface progress. The world’s 600 million adolescent girls have shown time and again that, given the skills and the opportunities, they can be the changemakers driving progress in their communities, building back stronger for all, including women, boys and men. It is time to stand with and for girls and to invest in a future that believes in their leadership and potential.
May we recognize the value and dignity of every person.
Empower your own girl children and teach them they are not inferior. Do not treat boy children as superior. Teach boys and girls mutual respect and appreciation for one another. Examine your own attitudes. Do you perpetuate old patriarchal bias? Change where necessary.
There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for you are all one in Christ Jesus.
No matter where she lives, every girl on this planet deserves the chance to learn and grow, to develop her mind and her talents, and to live a life of her own choosing. Although we have made life significantly better for our daughters than it was for our mothers and grandmothers, in too many parts of the world, girls are still undervalued, disrespected, abused, and prevented from contributing to society.
Removing the barriers that keep women and girls on the margins of economic, social, cultural, and political life must be a top priority for us all – businesses, governments, the United Nations, and civil society.
UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon
Girls are one of the most powerful forces for change in the world: When their rights are recognized, their needs are met, and their voices are heard, they drive positive change in their families, their communities, and the world.
Kathy Calvin, United Nations Foundation President & CEO
In the future, there will be no female leaders. There will just be leaders.
Men often ask me, ‘Why are your female characters so paranoid?’ It’s not paranoia. It’s recognition of their situation.
There is no longer a doubt that women are just as competent as men. Gender differences are guided by nurture, as society treats boys and girls differently from an early age.
Naveen Jain, Founder of InfoSpace
Business as usual with women left out of the decisions which affect them, and with their particular needs and circumstances overlooked in the outcomes, must not continue.
Helen Clark, Administrator of the United Nations Development Program (UNDP)
A world full of empowered women isn’t one where men are marginalized. It’s a world where everyone thrives.
Purnima Mane, President and CEO of Pathfinder International
The more I have spoken about feminism the more I have realized that fighting for women’s rights has too often become synonymous with man-hating. If there is one thing I know for certain, it is that this has to stop.
We know now that without gender equality and a full role for women in society, in the economy, in governance, we will not be able to achieve the world we hoped for.
Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, UN Under-Secretary-General and Executive Director, UN Women
Justice is about making sure that being polite is not the same thing as being quiet. In fact, often times, the most righteous thing you can do is shake the table.
Did you know?
- Worldwide, nearly 1 in 4 girls aged 15–19 years is neither employed nor in education or training compared to 1 in 10 boys of the same age. By 2021 around 435 million women and girls lived on less than $1.90 a day — including 47 million pushed into poverty as a result of COVID-19.
- 1 in 3 women worldwide have experienced physical or sexual violence. Emerging data shows that since the outbreak of COVID-19, violence against women and girls (VAWG), and particularly domestic violence, has intensified.
- At least 60% of countries still discriminate against daughters’ rights to inherit land and non-land assets in either law or practice.