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Saturday

International Day of the Girl Child

International Day of the Girl Child is an international observance day declared by the United Nations. October 11, 2012, was the first Day of the Girl. The observation supports more opportunity for girls, and increases awareness of 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 discriminationviolence and unfree child marriage.

The International Day of the Girl Child initiative began as a project of Plan International, a non-governmental organization that operates worldwide. The idea for an international day of observance and celebration grew out of Plan International's Because I Am a Girl campaign, which raises awareness of the importance of nurturing girls globally and in developing countries in particular. Plan International representatives in Canada approached the Canadian federal government to seek support for the initiative. A coalition of supporters raised awareness of the initiative internationally.

International Day of the Girl Child was formally proposed as a resolution by Canada in the United Nations General Assembly. Rona Ambrose, Canada's Minister for the Status of Women, sponsored the resolution; a delegation of women and girls made presentations in support of the initiative at the 55th United Nations Commission on the Status of Women. On December 19, 2011, the United Nations General Assembly voted to pass a resolution adopting October 11, 2012 as the inaugural International Day of the Girl Child. Each year's Day of the Girl has a theme; the first was "ending child marriage", and the second, in 2013, was "innovating for girl's education". The resolution states that the Day of the Girl recognizes.

2014 Theme: Empowering Adolescent Girls: Ending the Cycle of Violence

On December 19, 2011, the United Nations General Assembly adopted Resolution 66/170 to declare 11 October as the International Day of the Girl Child, to recognize girls’ rights and the unique challenges girls face around the world.

Governments, the UN system, civil society, and public and private institutions are called on to join forces and reaffirm their commitment to end the scourge of violence against adolescent girls and to promote their empowerment by:
  • Investing in adolescent girls to equip them with skills, confidence, and life options: through family, schools, technical and vocational education and training, and health, social and economic support systems;
  • Making infrastructure, services, and technology accessible to girls and effective in meeting their needs for safety, connectivity and mobility;
  • Facilitating adolescent girls engagement in civic, economic and political life;
  • Continuing to advocate for making violence against girls and women visible and unacceptable both in private and public domains;
  • Strengthening data, measurement and the evidence base in relation to the empowerment of
    and violence against adolescent girls.