October 11 was International Day of the Girl.
The United Nations first established the International Day of the Girl Child in December 2011, and the first day was celebrated in October 2012. The goals of the International Day of the Girl are to recognize the rights of girls and to draw attention to the challenges that girls face around the world. While many organizations and individuals work year-round to provide opportunities for girls and to protect their rights, having a specific day dedicated helps raise awareness internationally of the work done and still left to do.
The United Nations emphasizes that girls are a particularly important demographic to protect, educate, and support because girls have so much potential to change the world. As stated on the UN’s International Day of the Girl website, “An investment in realising the power of adolescent girls upholds their rights today and promises a more equitable and prosperous future, one in which half of humanity is an equal partner in solving the problems of climate change, political conflict, economic growth, disease prevention, and global sustainability.”
Each year, the International Day of the Girl focuses attention on a specific topic relating to girls. In 2012, the theme was ending child marriage. The following years’ themes were innovating for girls’ education, ending the cycle of violence, vision for 2030, global girl data movement, and empowering girls before, during, and after crises.
This year’s theme, “With Her: A Skilled GirlForce,” focuses on the problem of unemployed girls and the lacks of skills training to make girls competitive in the job market. The UN chose this theme in part because while great improvements have been made in girls’ education, health, and rights, there has been less focus on older girls’ lives and their ability to access higher education and well-paying jobs.
As the UN Secretary-General António Guterres said, “On this International Day of the Girl, let us recommit to supporting every girl to develop her skills, enter the workforce on equal terms and reach her full potential.”
Here at GirlSportWorks, we work every day to help girls grow confidence and develop life skills that will empower them in their daily lives, families, future careers, and beyond. While we treat every day as the day of the girl, we hope you all a happy International Day of the Girl!