Celebrate International Day of the Girl with WAGGGS!
11 October 2012
Join us in celebrating the first ever International Day of the Girl by participating in our collaborative blog and survey projects.
Finally, the long awaited day is here! The first ever International Day of the Girl comes to highlight the challenges girls worldwide are facing and to promote equal rights and opportunities for girls around the world.
From girls’ empowerment marches in Zimbabwe, to the launch of a new advocates programme for girls in Australia, to young women in Madagascar talking about ending violence on a global Google hangout with UN Women, Girl Guides and Girl Scouts in over 50 countries are celebrating the International Day of the Girl on 11 October 2012.
The blog site The World We Want for Girls launched as part of our The World We Want for Girls campaign has already received hundreds of entries, including drawings, stories, statements, films and photos, creating a vision of a perfect world for girls.
“My perfect world for girls is a world where girls have equal, better access to education, are free from violence and are empowered to make decisions about their lives,” said one blogger.
Many of the girls that already took The World We Want for Girls survey launched on 8 October have claimed that it is often challenging to be a girl where they live and it is more difficult for girls to reach their fullest potential compared to boys.
USA Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said on International Day of the Girl that the founding of Girl Guiding and Girl Scouting was “revolutionary” and that the first ever International Day of the Girl could be equally historic.
“It’s a chance to reflect back not only a hundred years of Girl Scouting but also the first ever International Day of the Girl Child,” she said. “So what will we do to commemorate that? I think we have to commit ourselves to do more on behalf of girls everywhere.”
But here is what is so exciting about the day – it’s NOT a one day to celebrate, but a start of a new journey. 900 million of girls are a huge potential to tap on, a driving force that can drive communities and countries out of poverty, a generation of future leaders. Among these 900 million agents of change, we have identified six bright leaders - our International Day of the Girls Ambassadors who will help us to make sure that this is only the beginning.
Read on for examples of two Girl Guides who are taking the opportunity to speak out on International Day of the Girl.
Girls speaking out on International Day of the Girl
Kumbukani, a Girl Guide from Malawi and a previous WAGGGS delegate to Commission on the Status of Women, was interviewed by UN Women on the issue of child marriage.
She said: “Girls who were forced into marriage and are now divorced with children are now coming and opening up and encouraging other girls not to rush into or follow their parents’ wish of marrying them off early because marriage can wait while school cannot. Since it is a rural community I am becoming a role model for many girls since they are seeing me succeed in education.”
Alex, a Girlguiding UK Advocate, who helped create and compile the Girls Attitudes Survey 2012, has written a thought-provoking essay on why it is so important to keep striving for gender equality.
She wrote: “With women facing extra pressure in the workplace, I need to do everything I can to prove that I’m valuable to my employer. It’s also hard to see how gender equality will be achieved within the workplace in the future if employers are too busy judging women by what they wear than by what they have achieved.”