Why is the International Day of the Girl celebrated today?

Under the slogan "With them: a generation of girls ready" is intended to raise awareness to defend and advance actions that allow girls to enter the labor market

Why is the International Day of the Girl celebrated today?

In 2011, according to the newspaper El País, the government of Canada suggested to the UN the need to create a special date in which problems of the girls that prevented them from developing harmoniously were made visible.

Leer en español: ¿Por qué se celebra hoy el Día Internacional de la Niña?

That is why on October 11, 2012, a day after Malala, the 14-year-old Pakistani activist who fights for the right of girls to education in her country was shot, the International Day of the Girl was commemorated for the first time.

This year, under the slogan "With them: a generation of girls ready", the goal set in Goal 5 of the Agenda for Sustainable Development that seeks to "achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls" is framed.

This point includes that, by 2030, they have the same health and education, the opportunity to participate in the processes of political and economic decision-making and a decent work.

According to UN Women, an agency charged with promoting gender equality, girls are still in disadvantaged and suffer from discrimination: only two thirds of developing countries have achieved gender equality in elementary education, they are subject to forced marriages that lead to pregnancies at an early age and many girls still suffer from practices such as ablation.

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This year alone, 12 million girls under the age of 18 will get married and 21 million girls between the ages of 15 and 19 will become pregnant in developing regions. In addition, UNESCO estimates that one in 10 girls in Africa does not attend school because of something as natural as menstruation.

"Child marriage can often lead to the end of the girl's educational stage, and in communities where this practice prevails, marrying a girl is part of a set of social norms and attitudes that reflect the low value placed on human rights of the girls," said Anju Malhotra, head of the Gender and Rights Section of UNICEF.

Today will also be carried out a series of actions and events around the world that seek to draw attention to these issues of great importance.

"On this International Day of the Girl, we reaffirm our commitment to support each and every girl so that they can develop their skills, join the workforce in conditions of equality and realize their full potential," said António Guterres, UN Secretary-General.


LatinAmerican Post | Luisa Fernanda Báez Toro
Copy edited by Marcela Peñaloza

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