International Day of the Girl Child
The power of the adolescent girl: vision for 2030
Today we celebrate the International Day of the Girl Child. In its fourth year as an internationally recognised day dedicated to highlighting the challenges faced by young girls and adolescent women, today represents an important opportunity to raise awareness about the progress being made towards empowerment.
Promoting women’s political and economic engagement: ambition for the future
Wednesday 28 – Friday 30 October 2015
This year the International Day of the Girl Child coincides with the conclusion of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and the adoption and commencement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The 11 October represents an international recognition of girl’s rights and the struggles confronting young women on a daily basis.
The theme for 2015 ‘The power of the adolescent girl: vision for 2030’ provides a source of continuity towards the objectives of promoting and developing girl’s rights. The MDGs were introduced in 2000 and include goals towards universal primary education, the promotion of gender equality and the empowerment of women, and the reduction of child mortality. Children who were born in 2000 and have grown up with these Goals will now also be the generation of the Sustainable Development Goals. The children born this year will become the first generation of the SDGs whilst also benefiting from the Vision for 2030 recognising the global issue of gender based challenges faced by girls.
Having a safe, healthy and educated life is a fundamental right for adolescent girls, providing the foundations for an empowered life. These rights allow girls to have control of their own futures and can help prepare for whatever roles they chose to go onto, whether that be as a matriarchal figure, a doctor, nurse, teacher, engineer, or political leader. The objectives being set both in the SDGs and in the Vision for 2030 will enable girls to realise their full potential and overcome the challenges and stigmas they face.
Both Member States and agencies of the United Nations, civil society organisations, and the necessary elements of the private sector are key to instigating and developing these efforts to empower girls through a number of means such as to;
- Invest in high quality education, skills, training, access to technology and other learning initiatives that prepare girls for life, jobs, and leadership
- Invest in health and nutrition suitable to the adolescent years, including puberty education, menstrual hygiene management, and sexual and reproductive health education and services
- Promote zero tolerance against physical, mental, and sexual violence
- Enact and consistently implement social, economic, and policy mechanisms to combat early marriage and female genital mutilation
- Invest in the creation and maintenance of social and public spaces for civic and political engagement, creativity and talent enhancement
- Promote gender-responsive legislation and policies across all areas especially for adolescent girls who are disabled, vulnerable and marginalized, and victims of trafficking and sexual exploitation
In partnership with Women of the Future Programme, and Week of Women UK, Wilton Park is convening an event on Promoting women’s political and economic engagement: ambition for the future. This roundtable will allow participants from a range of countries and stakeholder groups to examine the current level of engagement in different regions; will identify where action could be taken to deliver results most quickly; and will evaluate the potential impact of increased empowerment of women and girls in politics and the economy.
We have convened a number of events with women’s issues as the focal point. Previous events have included Women in the private sector in the Middle East and North Africa, Women-led business: building a strong and sustainable economy and Women in peacebuilding. Additionally, in response to the Girl Summit held in London in 2014, we are looking to convene events tackling the issue of child, early and forced marriage (CEFM) and female genital mutilation (FGM).
Women in peacebuilding (2013)