The global community Thursday celebrated the International Day of the Girl under the theme: “With Her: A Skilled GirlForce” aimed at highlighting the needs of the girl-child and challenges girls face, while advocating for investments in the most pressing needs and opportunities for girls to attain skills for employability in the ever changing labor market.
“On this International Day for the Girl,” said UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres in a statement to mark the 2018 United Nations Day for the Girl Child. “Let us recommit to supporting every girl to develop her skills, enter the workforce on equal terms and reach her full potential.”
The event, celebrated on 11th October each year across countries of the world, marks the beginning of a year-long effort to bring together partners and stakeholders to increase opportunities for the girl-child and increase awareness on gender inequality faced by girls in different parts of the world.
The International Day for the Girl Child evolved from the nonprofit Plan International`s “Because I Am a Girl” campaign which raises awareness on the importance of nurturing girls globally and in developing countries in particular.
On December 19, 2011and in a resolution sponsored by Canada, the United Nations General Assembly adopted October 11, 2012 as the inaugural International Day for the Girl Child. The resolution recognizes “the empowerment of and investment in girls, which are critical for economic growth.”
Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, UN under Secretary-General and executive director of UN Women, in a letter to all girls of the world, said this was a critical time for the girls of our world. “It is time to act, together with men and boys on the issues that will determine a lived equality for all, central to which is the ending of violence against women and girls,” she said.
Undoubtedly, the achievement of all the 17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) is dependent on the realization of SDGs 5 – gender equality, which is aimed at ensuring equal rights for women and girls everywhere, towards achieving sustainable development.
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