International Day of the Girl Child – “Digital generation. Our generation.”
Written by Roneel Narayan on October 11, 2021
International Day of the Girl Child is an international observance day declared by the United Nations; it is also called the Day of Girls and the International Day of the Girl. October 11, 2012, was the first day of the Girl Child.
The observation supports more opportunities for girls and increases awareness of gender inequality faced by girls worldwide based upon their gender. This inequality includes areas such as access to education, nutrition, legal rights, medical care, and protection from discrimination, violence against women and forced child marriage. The celebration of the day also “reflects the successful emergence of girls and young women as a distinct cohort in development policy, programming, campaigning and research.”
International Day of the Girl increases awareness of issues faced by girls around the world. Many[quantify] global development plans[which?] do not include or consider girls, and their issues become “invisible”. More than 62 million girls around the world had no access to education, as of c. 2014, according to USAID. Worldwide and collectively, girls ages 5 to 14 spend more than 160 million hours more on household chores than boys of the same age do. Globally, one in four girls is married before age 18. On October 11, 2016, Emma Watson, a United Nations Women’s Goodwill Ambassador, urged countries and families worldwide to end forced child marriage. Many[quantify] girls around the world are vulnerable to acts of sexual violence and the perpetrators often[how often?] go unpunished.
The Day of Girls helps raise awareness not only of the issues that girls face but also of what is likely to happen when those problems are solved. For example, educating girls helps reduce the rate of child marriage, disease and helps strengthen the economy by helping girls have access to higher-paying jobs.