By Adefowoke Ayo-Ponle
On 19th December 2011, the UN General Assembly adopted Resolution 66/170 to declare 11th October as the International Day of the Girl Child, in order to recognise girls’ rights and the unique challenges girls face around the world.
The United Nations on the11th of October, 2012 initiated the day of the girl child and its primary aim is to highlight and address the needs and challenges which girls face throughout the globe. While the general aim is to help girls find training and education in order to create young successful women.
The International Day of the Girl child 2022 is in commemoration of the 10years Anniversary of the day, it is a day that celebrates the uniqueness, importance power as well as the potentials of girls around the world. This year’s theme for the celebration is “Our time is now-our rights, our future” it is important to reiterate the need for the girl child to continue to break lots of barriers including breaking gender norms and equal right to education.
The annual recognised day of celebration has given girls increased attention in past years, yet it is pertinent to state that there is more to be done in area of continued advocacy and sensitisation. Let me also note that girls around the world continue to face unprecedented challenges to their education, their physical and mental wellness, and the protections needed for a life without violence. It is pertinent to state that a girl child needs to be mentored and taught values that will improve her self-worth and esteem.
The day marks the necessity of providing equal and fair opportunities to every girl in the world. In the words of Lubinda, the Zambian Teenage Advocate, “while there are girls and young women reaching out the stars and opening doors and opportunities, there are still a lot of doors that need keys to be opened”.
Finally, let me reiterate that gender equity is an important and integral part of human rights of the girl child, and one of the salient issues is an end to sexual and gender-based violence, if the future of the girl child is to be protected. The time is now and the future must be assured to protect the best interests of the girl-child.
Adefowoke Ayo-Ponle ©
State Lead, Lagos
NBA Women Forum.