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my voice our equal future essay in english

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This year`s theme for the International Day of the Girl is “My voice, our equal future” and we must say that we stand in awe of it. Looking back through history, we understand that with the declaration of the UN Decade for women in 1975, the wave of activities to ensure that woman had a fair and equitable place in society have skyrocketed. This milestone was proceeded by many women movements and the rise of various feminist groups grounded on the same foundation, the belief that women deserved better than they were getting. It should not be surprising to know or learn (for those who did not know), that the United Nations declared 11th October of every year the International Day of the Girl, with the first celebration of its kind taking place on 11th October 2012.

Anyone that was born in Africa before the 21st Century, clearly understands what it means for women to be not only restricted but also treated as second class citizens in society. Though we are currently living in a new era of empowerment, it is still common to find girls being denied the right to education because  their rightful place in society is in marriage and they should learn how to keep and maintain a home rather than waste school fees on education.  It is still common to find a woman who is denied a job because her sex makes her incapable of achieving as much as her male counterparts would. It is still ‘okay’ for a woman to keep her opinion to herself because it does not matter to anyone. Within the developing world, the issue of gender inequality has been identified to have adverse global effects and it is for that reason that SDG 5 stands for  Gender Equality,  because development without women is unattainable. In Uganda alone, 51% of the population is made up of women and the statistics in other countries relatively follow suit. Within Uganda`s agricultural sector, 2015 World Bank publication noted that women play a vital role in the sector and contribute more than average share of the crop labour in the region. So anyone would think that with that put into consideration, women would be granted equity in all affairs of the country and world.

“ My voice, our equal future ” It is such a beautiful and selfless theme. Women empowerment and advocacy for the girl child should never be a threat to men in society. If anything, it should be identified as an opportunity for collective development, collective contribution to financial advancement at all levels of the community and an opportunity for mutual agreement on a learned and informed basis. The restriction of the voice of the girl child begins with denying her the right to education, and it progresses on to denying her the freedom of speech and expression.

It is very disturbing to find an educated man calling women rights activist lazy. But it happens, when some individuals in society fail to embrace women empowerment and judge any woman who dares to disagree with them or question their authority, undisciplined, lazy and disrespectful.

The girl child should be taught how to use her voice and the boy child should be taught how to embrace empowered girls as equals and comrades rather than competitors and opposition. The future is too big for one gender to live in it alone, we must all be there. Likewise, we must all contribute to it. We must all cherish and nurture it because the future is our home tomorrow.

The future will never be beautiful if the girl child is not given room to fit into its standards and sometimes, that room means respecting her voice and her choice. The future will never be beautiful if the girls who would be mothers then are getting pregnant today. The futures will never be beautiful if the wives of tomorrow are being married off today. The future will never be beautiful enough if the counselors and team players that would support and back up visionary men tomorrow are made to believe that their opinion does not matter today. The future will never be beautiful if the visions and ideas that would solve certain global problems are killed and silenced today. The future is ours to nurture and to keep together for better.

“My voice, our equal future” Many times a girl`s voice has been misunderstood and her ‘no’ has been understood as a ‘yes’ and her ‘yes’ at times regarded as a ‘no.’ This creates a communication gap and where there is a loophole in communication, it is close to impossible to get anything done. You don’t believe? What if I tell you of the story of a nation that rose and  agreed  (communication) to build a high and strong tower, a tower high enough to reach heaven? This nation angered God and He confused their language so much that they could not understand themselves (loop in the communication) and they failed to build the tower. It is therefore important that as we rise to build the voice of the girl child, the society and community in which she lives is keen enough to listen to her and understand her. Otherwise, empowered girls, in a world of boys and men who are not empowered would also make development impossible, because instead of agreeing to resolve issues amicably, there would be argument and competition for power, dominion and authority.

All in all, we are all human beings and if we agree, then gender equality is attainable. So let`s get on the same page and agree that together we can. Let us agree that the girl child may not be as strong but is equally as important as the boy child. And finally, let us pledge to give an ear to her voice.

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My voice, our equal future

International Day of the Girl 2020

This week UNICEF announced the theme of this year’s International Day of the Girl (IDG): My Voice, Our Equal Future. A key moment for advocacy with and for girls, IDG 2020 presents an opportunity to reimagine a world shaped by the voice, vision and solutions of adolescent girls to drive progress towards a gender equal world.

As we commemorate 25 years since the adoption of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action – the global agenda for advancing the rights and empowerment of women and girls, everywhere - we are also invigorated by the launch of the multi-year, multi-partner campaign and movement for bold action on gender equality, Generation Equality. The needs and opportunities of adolescent girls and their solutions and actions are central to the movement.

In March, UNICEF launched A New Era for Girls: Taking stock of 25 years of progress , a joint report with Plan International and UN Women that reviews progress for girls, and lack of, over the last 25 years. Progress for adolescent girls specifically has not kept pace with the realities they face today, and COVID-19 has reinforced many of these gaps.

Let’s seize the opportunity to reimagine a better world inspired by adolescent girls – energized and recognized, counted and invested in. 

UNICEF UNI334031 Mawav

Theme: My voice, our equal future

International Day of the Girl (IDG) 2020- 11 October - is a key activation moment for all of us to raise up the diverse range of adolescent girls’ voices and actions for an equal future. Under the theme, My Voice, Our Equal Future , IDG 2020 will focus on reimagining a world shaped by adolescent girls’ voice, vision and solutions to:

  • live free from gender-based violence, harmful practices, HIV/AIDS  
  • learn new skills toward the futures they chose  
  • lead as a generation of activists accelerating social change

Want to get involved? Here are just some of the ways you can join advocacy efforts this International Day of the Girl:

  • Share stories of inspiring adolescent girls, groups of girls, girl-led organizations who are developing innovative solutions or leading efforts toward positive social change including gender equality in their communities and nations. Let’s collectively amplify their leadership, actions and impact to inspire others.
  • Participate in a youth-led digital activation. Youth are developing a digital activism campaign on TikTok aiming to raise the diversity of girls’ voices and vision of a reimagined future. Stay tuned for information in September of how to get involved in the challenge and spread the activation among your networks.
  • Use the IDG 2020 communications toolkit to be shared in September to advocate shared key messages, raise awareness and demand actions from stakeholders and decision-makers.
  • International Day of the Girl
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My voice, our equal future, joining mariam, a girl who is speaking up for change.

Joining Mariam, a girl who is speaking up for change

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Girls are change makers and world shapers! When girls speak up, they are a powerful force to be reckoned with.

This International Day of the Girl 2021 we listened to the story of 16-year-old Mariam Rabee’a and heard about how she benefitted from joining Dawwie a National Girls’ Empowerment Initiative that has been empowering girls in their communities and at the forefront of advocating for Gender Equality on Day of the Girl. Mariam was fully supported and encouraged by her elder sister and aunt to take part in all the Dawwie activities. 

In essence, Dawwie is the National Girls’ Empowerment Initiative led by the  National Council for Childhood and Motherhood  (NCCM) in partnership with  National Council for Women  (NCW), with technical support from UNICEF, and many other partners.  Participating in sports is not something to be taken for granted in conservative societies like that of Mansheyet Nasser. The neighborhood is located on the outskirts of Eastern Cairo considered to be one of the most populous neighborhoods in the capital.    Dawwie facilitates access for girls to sport activities to break gender stereotypes, allowing girls to practice their leadership skills just like the boys

Joining Mariam, a girl who is speaking up for change

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"My voice, our equal future": The Spotlight Initiative amplifies the voices of young female activists in Niger

Photo of poet, Hama Daouda  Fatouma, wearing a white polo Spotlight Initiative shirt.

What do a NASA scientist, a disability rights activist, a social media campaigner, a women’s rights defender, a midwife, and two slam poets have in common - apart from their beaming smiles? They are all committed advocates working to end violence against women and girls in their country.

Niger has the highest child marriage prevalence rate in the world according to the UN Children's Fund (UNICEF), with 76 per cent of girls married before the age of 18 and 28 per cent married before they turn 15. In 2017, the government raised the mandatory school leaver’s age for girls to 16—a significant step in combatting child marriage—but there is still work to be done.

To celebrate the International Day of the Girl  Child , the UN-EU supported Spotlight Initiative partnered with these seven young advocates. The women not only speak out against gender-based violence—including harmful practices such as child marriage—but they show the world exactly what is possible when girls have equal opportunity to succeed.

Débora, 24, writer and midwifery student

“Our role as women is to have each other’s backs,” says Justancia Débora Dianga-Mbembo, a midwifery student and writer. “Violence can happen to any one of our friends or family.”  Débora knows, because it happened to her.

Two years ago, she experienced a pregnancy loss as the result of domestic violence. Today, she transforms her experiences into writing, and hopes to publish her work in an effort to help other young women and girls who may find themselves in a similar situation.  “I write a lot because I believe that as girls, we have to be actors of our destinies. By raising our voices, we ensure an equal future for all girls in our country,” she says. 

A passionate advocate for women’s rights, she is studying midwifery with the intention of specializing in gynecological obstetrics to ensure that disadvantaged girls and women have access to quality reproductive health services.

Yasmina, 21, women's rights defender

Yasmina Mohamed Boubacar was raised in an orphanage after her mother passed away when she was born. She understands well the life-changing power of educating girls. “I benefited from all possible opportunities for a child, starting with getting a quality education,” she says. “I graduated from high school at the age of 16 and now, as a young leader, I do a lot of community work and sensitization on issues such as child marriage, girls’ education and gender-based violence.”

Today, she is the Secretary General of Taimakon Marayu, an organization that helps orphans in Niger—many of whom are vulnerable girls.

“I like travelling to different places and setting up listening and awareness clubs for girls. They need a platform to express themselves and simply share their grievances and aspirations,” she says. 

She recently appeared on RFI radio programme  ‘7 milliards de voisins’ to speak about education in the Sahel region, and met with the French president at a side event at the G7 Joint Ministerial Meeting on Education and Development in Paris. 

Nana, 30, advocate for people living with disabilities

Nana Natitia dreams of “a Niger where women are protected from all forms of violence, and where their right to an education will no longer be a struggle [against expectations] but an achievement.”

One of the first things you notice about her is the brightly coloured turban she wears in place of the more common hijab or scarf. The turban is typically only worn by men, but is one of the small ways Nana is resisting gender expectations in her daily life. “I asked if turban was for men only… I decided to wear it to embrace my culture, my religion, my identity,” she says.

In addition to caring for three young children, the social entrepreneur still finds time for community engagement.

For the past year, she has been the Executive Secretary of Global Dignity Niger, which aims to empower vulnerable women and people with disabilities by improving their opportunities for social inclusion and shifting harmful public attitudes. 

In 2018, she attended the Clinton Global Initiative University annual meeting in Chicago to speak about creating an equal future for women and people living with disabilities.

Fadji, 29, NASA scientist

Dr. Fadji Maina is no stranger to breaking barriers. After gaining her Ph.D. in Hydrology from the University of Strasbourg at the age of 25, she became the first Nigerien scientist to join NASA. Fadji uses high-performance computing and satellite data to understand the impacts of climate extremes and wildfires on water resources, and is a testament to the critical need for women’s full and equal participation in development.

"Our mothers and daughters deserve a better world without violence in which they will blossom and use their talents and extraordinary potential to contribute to the development of our countries,” she says. 

Rachida, 26, social media activist

Rachida Mamadou Oumarou manages several high-profile social media pages for female audiences and boasts 20,000 followers on her personal Facebook page alone. But don’t call her an influencer – what drives Rachida is her mission to give women and girls the tools they need to succeed. One of her pages, Matan Niger (Women of Niger), mixes beauty, culture and health content with messages of gender equality and information on women's rights and interests.

“In whatever I do, I see myself contributing to a better future for all the girls and women of my country because we are its future,” she says. “It’s one of my greatest dreams to help women understand violence and the issues affecting them, so we can improve their lives on every level.”

Nourratou, 24 and Fatouma, 25, slam poets

Norratou Oumarou Hega and Hama Daouda  Fatouma—better known as Nourath Nourath and Fa.2.Maths.A—are two slam artists from Niamey. The two friends use the spoken word as a way to discuss subjects that are often considered taboo in Niger, such as rape and female genital mutilation (FGM).

Nourratou has represented Niger several times at international festivals, including in Togo and Burkina Faso, and is currently working to publish a collection of slam poetry entitled ‘My Mirror, My Distress’ dealing with themes of sexual violence, child marriage, and other issues affecting girls in Niger.

Fatoumata has also been recognized for her art form, winning the second National Slam Poetry Cup last year. “I see slam poetry like therapy. Imagine how unconventional it is for a young woman of my age to express herself through a vocal art, to speak up about abuse and violence to a predominantly male audience and have their full attention. 

“We also have girls in the audience, who either learn about violence and related issues, or find support through our words and understand that they are not the only one going through hidden violence…Through slam poetry, we can overcome ignorance because ignorance does a lot of harm.”

The Spotlight Initiative has partnered with the Government of Niger to prevent child marriage and gender-based violence through awareness-raising activities, community mobilization, girls’ education, institutional support and by engaging religious and traditional leaders.

Produced by the Spotlight Initiative. Written by Fatou Binetou Dia. This article's adaptation was posted in French to the UN Niger website on 11 October 2020. The  original English article with more photos and videos  can be found on the Spotlight Initiative's website. Learn more about  UN Niger and the Spotlight Initiative .

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My voice, our equal future

sportanddev

A letter from See Vang

Hello everyone,

During this celebration, I want to tell you about my role model, Mrs. Lao Khang.

As a Pass It Back player with the Lao Rugby Federation for two years, I played for Team Mou Pa (the Wild Boars). At first, when I joined the team as a player, I was very shy and I had no confidence in myself.

Lao Khang’s story inspired me because she is a good person. Lao Khang has a lot of rugby experience and she is very brave. I would like to follow her in rugby and in her work. I work hard to complete my work at home and for my family so that I can attend all rugby trainings and never miss them.

Lao Khang is an honest person who works hard. All of these reasons make me want to be like her. Also, she is a role model for others in our community and so I will work hard to be a role model in my community too.

I will take all the experiences I have gained from the activities and my role models to improve myself so I will have more confidence.

Thank you. 

A letter from Hai

hai.jpg

Dear friends,

Gender equality has been embraced around the world for a long time now. However, in some places, gender prejudices still exist, sometimes leading to heated arguments. When I joined Pass It Back, I learnt more about gender through the Understanding Gender curriculum. 

One time, while playing sports, I had an argument about gender discrimination. It was when I was playing football in my village’s playground with a group that had only two girls and mostly boys at the same age or younger than me.

Apart from us, many other male adults also came there every afternoon to play football, volleyball and other games. However, there were very few little girls and women – most of the time, we had only around 5-6 girls. 

That day, when I was playing, a lady standing nearby looked at us and said: “What kind of girl are you who plays football? Do you see any other girls playing football here? Go home and cook for your parents. Your parents should have given birth to a boy.” 

Hearing those words, I was furious and frustrated. I felt like I was being looked down on. Yet, I tried to keep calm and told her: “I am playing because I have finished all my housework.

“Also, men and women are equal now. If boys can play then girls can play too. Boys are not better than girls. You also have a daughter. Do you want to see her spend time and have fun with her friends?” She didn’t reply. 

Sometime later, it seemed like she had changed her mind and even encouraged her daughter to play sports. Day after day, more and more girls came to the playground to play not only football but also many other fun games. So, what do you think speaking up means? What would happen if we don’t let our voice be heard?

I think speaking up is to express our opinions about a certain issue. However, many people hesitate to speak their mind because they are worried about how other people will react. Nevertheless, if you stay silent, people might never abandon their outdated prejudices. Let’s speak up at the right time, in the right place, to protect your own rights and the rights of other girls. 

  • Visit the ChildFund website to view the original article
  • Visit the ChildFund Pass It Back website
  • Related article: International Day of the Girl Child
  • Related article: Empowering children and young people through sport in Egypt

my voice our equal future essay in english

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my voice our equal future essay in english

“My Voice, Our Equal Future.”

my voice our equal future essay in english

Week 2 Theme - #dayofthegirl

"my voice, our equal future..

Every year on 11 October, the International Day of the Girl, UNICEF launches an annual campaign with girls to amplify their voices and stand up for their rights. This year, under the theme, “My voice, our equal future”, let’s seize the opportunity to reimagine a better world inspired by adolescent girls – energized and recognized, counted and invested in. This week we hone in on SDG 5 – Gender Equality. 

Listen to the story ‘Pink is for Boys’  found below in the Buncee. 

Create your own or class book or buncee story just like this week’s read aloud. You might even like to use https://app.bookcreator.com and upload to Wakelet. The Global Write team can’t wait to see your ideas of things girls and boys can play with matching the colours. We also can’t wait to see the creativity of the books created from the writing prompt this week. 

Prompt: Finish these sentences …

Watch below the video from CARE ( http://my.care.org ) 

CARE works around the globe to save lives, defeat poverty and achieve social justice.

After watching the video and reading the meaning behind this week’s theme of International Day of the Girl it is time to write. Your challenge is  to use the 5 words provided to write a piece of writing that links to the theme. It can be a story, descriptive piece, a poem, a letter (Dear Girls….), any style of writing. Do not exceed 150 words. 

Your prompt :    future    girl/s    recognized     voice    equal 

All of these 5 words must be in your writing piece this week. Think about how your piece of writing could amplify the voices and stand up for girls all over the world. You may choose to make a video like the feature video from CARE to share your message. The Global Write team will look forward to seeing the creativity writers show, when sharing how important Gender Equality is in our world. Lets share the hashtag #dayofthegirl 

Important Message

You will notice that the prompts have no age category linked to them this week. There should be no boundary to what prompt teachers or learners choose to use. There is a Simple and Advanced prompt and it is by choice which one is chosen for learners to write with.

We hope you enjoy this weeks prompts and continue to support the achievement of SDG 5 – Gender Equality . 

Publish Here

Remember when publishing to wakelet you can add the following ways:.

my voice our equal future essay in english

The UN Sustainable Goal we are supporting this week is :

my voice our equal future essay in english

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Opportunity Desk

Women and Career “Our Voice, Our Equal Future” Essay Competition 2020

my voice our equal future essay in english

Deadline: September 30, 2020

Entries are invited for the Women and Career “Our Voice, Our Equal Future” Essay Competition 2020 . Are you a young girl between 12-19 years? Do you have an opinion on what your future should be like? Can you lend your voice towards creating a sustainable future for yourself and other generation of young girls? Here is your chance to make this happen!

The WnC Essay Competition, organized by Women and Career Organization, is an opportunity for Secondary School girls between the ages 12-19 to share their ideas and viewpoints with the world at large. All you have to do is write on the topic: The Future We Want: The Time is Now .

  • Winner: $50 and a hardcopy book of Be Fearless by Jane Egerton-Idehen.
  • 1st runner-up: $30 and a hardcopy book of Be Fearless by Jane Egerton-Idehen.
  • 2nd runner-up: $20 and a hardcopy book of Be Fearless by Jane Egerton-Idehen.

Eligibility

  • Open to all 12-19 year old girls from all countries.
  • Essays should not exceed 750 words in length.
  • All essays must be in English and must be in word or PDF document format.
  • Only one entry per applicant.
  • Attach a passport photograph.

Application

Selected finalists will be required to provide a means of identification (School Identity Card, National ID Card, Birth Certificate or any other means of identification) and also a 1-2 minutes video on why they should be selected.

Click here to apply

For more information, visit WnC Essay Competition .

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Jude Ogar is an educator and youth development practitioner with years of experience working in the education and youth development space. He is passionate about the development of youth in Africa.

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My Voice, Our Equal Future

my voice our equal future essay in english

This year’s International Day of the Girl Child was commemorated under the theme, “My Voice, Our Equal Future.” We celebrated the milestones we have realized in making the world a better place for girls to become better leaders, entrepreneurs and change-makers, but also pondered upon the challenges the girl child continues to face across board.

Girls are breaking boundaries and barriers posed by stereotypes and exclusion, including those directed at children with disabilities and those living in marginalized communities. As entrepreneurs, innovators and initiators of global movements, girls are creating a world that is relevant for them and future generations. This fact notwithstanding, the social position of the women and girls in Uganda has, comparatively speaking, changed little and the process has been slow. The forces that operate to free women and girls from the bondage of harmful traditions have not had their full impact. Whilst several efforts made in changing the status quo of many women and girls in the society, their social status in many societies remains the same.

Today, 25 years after the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action, the most progressive blueprint ever for advancing women’s rights, discrimination and limiting stereotypes remain rife. Whilst progress has been made in addressing the challenges the girl child faces in their day today lives, this has not kept pace with the realities they face today; in contexts of technological change, humanitarian emergencies, pandemics are remarkably different from 1995 and more of the same: with violence, institutionalized biases, poor learning and life opportunities, and multiple inequalities unresolved. Girls from the poorest households are not benefiting from the expansion in education, while those in school are struggling to secure the quality education they need to compete in a rapidly changing workforce, where digital and transferable skills, like critical thinking and confidence, are indispensable. There are major breakthroughs that still need to be made.

As cases of Covid-19 continued to rise across different parts of the world, the pandemic united the world in an incredibly unique way. While it is true that everyone has struggled with the fallout of this global pandemic, it has had more serious consequences on some of the most vulnerable populations thus reinforcing many gaps. Adolescent girls have been among the most adversely affected and for some, life has become downright dangerous. Emerging data shows that since the outbreak of COVID-19, violence against women and girls (VAWG), and particularly domestic violence, has intensified.

In Uganda, as with many other countries around the world, Covid-19 has increased girls’ risk of violence, abuse, exploitation, and neglect. The pandemic has also resulted in an increased rate of teenage pregnancy . Many learners between the ages of 14 and 15 got pregnant and are unlikely to further their studies even when schools re-open. This is a big blow to the economy and its effects will live on. Covid-19 has also resulted in a secondary health crisis in Uganda; some girls have tried to terminate their pregnancies, risking their lives or escaping with long lasting complications.

In 2020, a gender-equitable world is still a far away dream. To accelerate progress, girls need to be involved in both the decision making and designing of solutions that impact their future. Girls are rights holders and equal partners in the fight for gender equality. They represent a tremendous engine for transformational change towards gender equality and if meaningfully supported, they have the potential to change the world. They deserve the full support of the global community to be empowered to successfully transition to adulthood with their rights intact, able to make their own informed choices and with the social and personal assets acquired to live fulfilled lives. Ending all forms of discrimination against women and girls is not only a basic human right, but it also has a multiplier effect across all other development areas and thus empowering women and girls and promoting gender equality is crucial to accelerating sustainable development.

Read the latest stories and news about our work across the world

Read the latest stories and news about our work across the world

“My voice, our equal future” – reimagining a better future

Getting girls to stay in school is a cornerstone for wider development of society. Humana People to People celebrates International Day of the Girl Child on 11 October. In 2020, the theme for the day is “My voice, our equal future”.

Humana People to People supports young girls and adolescent girls to access education in the global south. Humana People to People is for equal opportunities between female and male groups. Equal rights and opportunities for girls and boys help all children fulfill their potential.

International Womens Day 3

A report from the UNICEF earlier this year warned that a third of the world's poorest girls, aged between 10 and 18, have never been to school. The report shows, there are 130 million girls who are completely missing out on school.

Widening access to education for girls has a multiplier effect for communities - improving women's chances in employment, delaying marriage, making families more prosperous, and increasing the health of the next generation of children.

For many deeply impoverished families there are some very tough choices about whether they have the resources to send their girls to school. There is a risk that girls are married off at a young age or kept at home to work, which might free up an adult to go and earn an income to get food for the family.

Humana People to People taking action on girls missing out on school

ADPP Mozambique is a co-founder and member of the Humana People to People, a network of 30 not-for-profit organizations present in 45 countries spread across Europe, North America, Africa, Asia and Central and South America.

Between April 2014 - March 2020, ADPP Mozambique implemented a project named Nikhalamo (Girls Stay in School), a word that loosely translates from the local Chuabo language to mean “I am here in school to stay”, which affirms girls’ intention to stay in school.

Nikhalamo project was designed to address the various barriers that hamper primary school completion and transition to secondary schools among vulnerable girls in the district of Namacurra, Zambezia Province of Mozambique.

Learning to cut properly before sewing

The project supported girls to access education by availing Community Block Grants which promoted enrollment of girls, improving the learning and sanitary environments at the local schools, strengthening life skills among young girls, and mobilizing the community members to support the education of the girls through awareness raising activities and early childhood development activities.

The project reached out to 5,878 girls aged 10-17 years. It covered in 23 primary and 3 secondary schools from and an estimated 15,000 community members.

Key outcome of Nikhalamo project in 2019 were:

  • 76 primary and secondary school teachers trained in gender and child-protection for continued delivery of gender-sensitive and child centred pedagogy;
  • 130 school council members trained on gender and child protection for an enabling, gender sensitive and safe environment for learning;
  • Restored vulnerable girls’ dignity during menstruation through distributing 2,900 reusable and 1,500 disposable sanitary pads;
  • Constructed 14 separate latrines and 5 community preschools;
  • Implemented 30 after school clubs, 7 science, mathematics and technology clubs, 26 reading circles and 26 WASH (Water, Sanitation, Health and Hygiene) clubs;
  • HIV/AIDS prevention advice and age appropriate sexual reproductive health rights teachings;
  • Awareness campaign for girls and boys on the negative consequences of child and forced marriages, as well as the dangers of teenage pregnancies and how to avoid them;
  • Gender norms sessions reached 5,100 women and men with key messages on non-harmful gender norms to promote equality in the home.

Nikhalamo International day of Girls

The project provided a second chance to girls and young women who wanted to complete their primary or secondary education or who wanted to acquire livelihood skills. The special focus on vulnerable girls completing upper primary school and transitioning to lower secondary school was key in breaking traditional norms and practices of early forced marriages.

A key component of the project was on strengthening the girls’ academic performance and life skills through promoting a strong reading culture, both in school and at home.

Nikhalamo was implemented through close collaboration with education authorities and local communities. The synergy creation has meant better retention of girls in schools and that issues of keeping girls out of the learning process were addressed by integrating government involvement as well as local leadership structures.

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​In Nigeria, less than half of all school-age girls are enrolled in, and graduate, from school. At Give Girls A Chance (GGAC), we believe that educating girls is the single most powerful investment to shape a better future for Nigeria. We started in 2016 with the goal of increasing young girls’ access to quality education in Nigeria. Our team of dedicated mentors and volunteers work directly with girls in four secondary school in the Abuja area, providing scholarships, mentorships, and guidance. We aim to do this by addressing issues related to lack of access, low levels of awareness of the importance of education, and poor infrastructure of educational institutions. 

In Nigeria, less than half of all school-age girls are enrolled in, and graduate, from school. At Give Girls A Chance (GGAC), we believe that educating girls is the single most powerful investment to shape a better future for Nigeria. We started in 2016 with the goal of increasing young girls’ access to quality education in Nigeria. Our team of dedicated mentors and volunteers work directly with girls in four secondary school in the Abuja area, providing scholarships, mentorships, and guidance.

We partner with schools, sponsors, and local organizations to equip the girls with the knowledge, skills, and confidence to succeed 

We link the girls in our programs to qualified and capable mentors to improve their physical, mental, and social well-being

We offer programs and scholarships to improve comprehension and literacy levels and emphasize the benefits of getting a quality education

Our approach is to provide comprehensive support to girls between the ages of 10 and 19 years from low-income families as well as to systematically develop the schools in the communities in which we work.

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  • Oct 1, 2020

International Day of the Girl Child 2020: My Voice, Our Equal Future

my voice our equal future essay in english

Despite the fact that the last few decades have witnessed the global clamor for the expansion, recognition and protection of human rights in all spheres of life, the lives and rights of women and children all around the world continue to be stifled by discrimination and oppression. The girl child particularly remains the most vulnerable in this group as this is where the oppression of both women and children intersect. Following the enactment of a host of international and local laws supporting the rights and equality of the girl child, such as the Beijing Declaration, the Convention on the Rights of the Child, and more, the International Day of the Girl Child was established to commemorate the importance of the efforts of such agreements and action plans in furtherance of the empowerment of girls everywhere. Thus, on October 11, 2012, the first International Day of the Girl Child was celebrated and was declared by the United Nations as the official day of observance of this cause. However, there still exists a significant gap between the goals of this cause and the reality of far too many girls, particularly in Nigeria. The girl child in Nigeria still suffers various forms of oppression and inequality due to gender discrimination and the vulnerability of her status as a child, some of which include: gender stereotyping, sexual and gender based violence, female genital mutilation, child marriage, child trafficking, period poverty, access to technology, access to healthcare, access to nutrition and access to education. All these factors have adverse effects on the life of girls and thus, it is important that their realities are brought to light, now more than ever. The prejudicial treatment of girls is detrimental to the Nigerian society as it constitutes a hindrance to the prosperity of the country, but more importantly however, girls are human beings and must be treated as full humans whose lives matter, simply because they do. Therefore, it is the duty of the government and the citizens of Nigeria to ensure and protect the rights of all girls by working to execute the tenets of the global agendas which have been established for the empowerment and protection of girls and by lending their voices to this cause in every other way possible. This can be from challenging certain laws which are discriminatory in nature to criticizing and changing certain harmful laws and customary practices. Lending one’s voice also includes doing work in little and personal ways to protect and ensure that the rights of girls are upheld. This may be through mentoring, sending a girl to school, donating to health and feeding funds, protecting girls against violence and abuse, and so on.

It only takes one person’s action or inaction for inequality and discrimination to be inflicted on a girl child. Thus, it will be through each person’s voice or continual contribution that a collective effort towards a more fair and just society, free of oppression and discrimination, can be formed and lead to an equal future for every girl child in Nigeria.

To learn more, visit our campaign page .

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My voice, our equal future: International Day of the Girl 2020

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Posted 09 October 2020 in EMpower News   |   Share

“My voice, our equal future”, let’s seize the opportunity to reimagine a better world inspired by adolescent girls – energized and recognized, counted and invested in.

EMpower is proud to join the global community and celebrate Day of the Girl 2020. This day was first recognized 25 years ago and marks a milestone for adding girls’ work onto the global agenda. Despite the progress that has been made, great challenges remain to end all forms of gender-based violence and combat the inequalities that girls all over the world face. This year, the pandemic has highlighted the continued need to defend equality and girls’ empowerment. The pandemic’s consequences have disproportionately impacted girls and women and threaten to reverse progress made in access to education, safety, and rights. Now, more than ever, it is critical that girls are meaningfully included in initiatives that address their needs and place them at the forefront as leaders.

The theme for this year’s Day of the Girl is ‘ My voice, our equal future’ and calls just for this, recognizing that any progress forward must include meaningful representation by all, especially girls. Celebrating and advocating with and for girls today, and everyday, remains as important as ever. EMpower remains committed to strengthening programming with and for girls. In her recent article , Cynthia Steele, EMpower CEO and President “Let us double-down on our commitment to be and celebrate girls, women and under-represented people shattering stereotypes everywhere.”

We’re proud to highlight a few of the commitments that we have made this past year to strengthen girls’ work we look forward to the continued work and the fearless and awe-inspiring girl leaders that continue to lead this work!

EMpower’s work with girls have five essential characteristics:

  • We start with girls: aiming for girls’ expertise, voice, capabilities and ideas to be at the heart of our adolescent girls programming
  • We invest in learning: from building in feedback loops for the girls to creating space for grantee partners to share learnings
  • We convene: bringing together girls and local organizations to strengthen learning & solidarity
  • We share what we know: amplifying best practices and innovation to girls, program practitioners, researchers and movement builders, and finally
  • We shift the narrative around adolescent programming: contributing to amplify the voices, experience and lived realities of girls and creating as well as seeking platforms for girls to be seen and heard.

Some highlights where girls shine through in EMpower’s work:

The EMpowHer Program

Since 2018, enabling EMpower to partner with local partners to develop and strengthen age-appropriate programming for very young adolescent (VYA) girls (ages 10-14) living at the intersection of multiple opportunities as well as vulnerabilities. The goal of this initiative is to support very young adolescent girls to build their self-esteem, friendships, sense of agency and purpose so they can stay and learn in school, be healthy, believe in their power, connect with other girls, and reclaim and reshape the narrative of what a girl is and can be.

A Window of Opportunity

This year EMpower made another exciting step forward in our girls work with the release of the research report A Window of Opportunity: Programming With and For Very Young Adolescent Girls Report . The report highlights the importance of focusing on very young adolescent girls (ages 10-14) both in programming and funding. Favour hosted EMpower’s webinar launching the VYAG report. See the full webinar here .

The Girls Advisory Council is a group of 16 adolescent girl leaders selected by EMpower’s grantee partner organizations in India to advise on EMpower’s grantmaking strategy in India. Some members from the Girls Advisory Council recently spoke at a webinar about the impacts of COVID-19 on girls in India. Watch the webinar here .

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JCoR

Justice at the heart of global transformation

My Voice, Our Equal Future: Girls Speak to Climate Change

This event joins the themes of International Day of the Girl 2021 and CSW66. It provides space for a global conversation among girls, who will discuss their contributions to climate justice, the obstacles they see and their hopes for the future. In Our Common Agenda, António Guterres mentions youth 39 times. He writes, “Listen to and work with youth”. This event seeks to do just that – especially with girls. Girl advocates will approach climate change from perspectives such as education, technology, Covid19, food security and period poverty.

Este evento une los temas del Día Internacional de la Niña 2021 y de la CSW66. Este evento ofrece un espacio para una conversación global entre las niñas, que discutirán sus contribuciones a la justicia climática, los obstáculos que ven y sus esperanzas para el futuro. En Nuestra Agenda Común, António Guterres menciona a los jóvenes 39 veces. Escribe: “Escuchen y trabajen con los jóvenes”. Este evento pretende hacer precisamente eso, especialmente con las chicas. Las niñas defensoras abordarán el cambio climático desde perspectivas como la educación, la tecnología, Covid19, la seguridad alimentaria y la pobreza menstrual.

Cet événement rejoint les thèmes de la Journée internationale de la fille 2021 et de la CSW66. Cet événement offre un espace pour une conversation mondiale entre les filles, qui discuteront de leurs contributions à la justice climatique, des obstacles qu’elles voient et de leurs espoirs pour l’avenir. Dans Notre programme commun, António Guterres mentionne les jeunes 39 fois. Il écrit : “Écoutez les jeunes et travaillez avec eux”. Cet événement vise à faire exactement cela, en particulier avec les filles. Les défenseurs des filles aborderont le changement climatique sous des angles tels que l’éducation, la technologie, Covid19, la sécurité alimentaire et la pauvreté liée aux menstruations.

Interpretation available in French and Spanish.

Date & Time : 17 March 4:00pm (New York) 

Click on the following links to view the event flyer in English , Français , and Español .

Mi Voz, Nuestro Futuro Igualitario: Las Niñas Hablan del Cambio Climático

my voice our equal future essay in english

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Joint statement: international day of the girl child 2020 - their voice, our equal future, time to focus on girls in iraq [en/ar], attachments.

Preview of Joint Statement_ International Day of the Girl Child 2020_ARABIC.pdf

11 October marks the International Day of the Girl Child, a day dedicated to girls' empowerment, fulfilment of girls' rights and solving challenges that they face.

This year, the global theme is "My Voice, Our Equal Future," a reminder to listen to girls , understand the changes they want to see and to ensure that all of them have an equal opportunity for a bright, safe and healthy future.

In Iraq, the challenges experienced by girls and boys are many and complex. Violence against children, including young people is unacceptably high in Iraq, with 80 per cent facing violence at home and in schools. Many girls in Iraq, like millions of girls around the world, suffer from female genital mutilation, child marriage, sexual harassment and abuse, and other harmful practices.

Girls across Iraq continue to be particularly affected by increased insecurity, which in turn has imposed restrictions on movement that affects their access to education, protection and jobs. Young girls are keen to make the most of opportunities, have specific interests, identities and experiences and are keen to share accountability in their development, exercise of human rights and ensure their gender-differentiated needs.

The COVID-19 pandemic and restrictions on movement have elevated risks for girls to be violated and abused. The number of gender-based violence cases has increased since the onset of COVID19 pandemic in Iraq according to the Protection Cluster Monitoring in Response to COVID-19 (August 2020)

According to the GBV Information Management System's data of the first two quarters of 2020, 23 per cent of the incidents of violence reported to the service providers were among children and adolescents, of which 6 per cent were aged between 0 and 11 years, and 17 per cent were aged between 12 and 17 years old.

Interviews conducted by the United Nations with families living in displacement camps across Nineveh governorate, affirm that child marriage remains a frequent practice and a coping mechanism for families living in poverty to reduce the financial strain.

Education and learning are some of the best ways to empower girls and protect them against violence, exploitation and social exclusion by providing them with the opportunity to build a better life for themselves, their families and their communities. To make education and learning accessible and empowering for girls, it needs to be safe and gender sensitive.

Having zero tolerance to bullying, cyberstalking, sexting and harassment should be a priority for all as part of the national COVID-19 efforts to reimagine school systems and learning, we must address violence against girls of all ages in and around classrooms and on digital learning platforms. Because girls have higher risk than boys to experience violence, verbal and sexual abuse, a multi-sectoral approach is needed to address all risk factors and cases. Youth-friendly, accessible and quality education and learning, health and social services are essential for girls' empowerment and their development.

Ending gender-based violence is not a far-fetched dream; this is a real possibility. All that is needed is for girls to have access to formal education, , skilled, civically engaged, healthy, supported, and protected at home, in institutions and at the community. The alternative is devastating with a lasting negative and damaging impact to the health, education and well-being of Iraqi girls.

We call on the government, civil society organisations, the private sector, faith-based groups and the international community to accelerate their efforts to:

  • Improve equal access to quality primary and secondary education including life-skills
  • Promote access to alternative learning opportunities for out of school adolescents and youth, in the form on life skills and citizenship education, including social and business entrepreneurship for improved learning to work transition;
  • Increase capacity of the health sector to provide adolescents and youth-friendly health services across the country, with focus on girls; Ensure that girls - survivors of GBV access free and quality specialised services anchored in survivor-centred and age-appropriate approaches
  • Mobilise girls, boys, parents and leaders through civic and social engagement to challenge discriminatory gender norms and create real social, economic and civic opportunities for all girls;
  • Draft and enforce legislation, such as the anti-domestic violence law and child law, to protect girls and prosecute those who harm them;
  • Implement the recommendations by the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women, including to criminalise, forced, temporary and child marriage;
  • Increase availability of child protection services for girls and young women.

Girls can be powerful agents of change, and nothing should keep them from participating fully in all areas of life. We must come together and show our commitment by dedicating resources for girls to realise their rights and fulfil their full potential.

UNICEF Representative to Iraq, Ms Hamida R. Lasseko

UNFPA Representative to Iraq, Dr Rita Columbia

OHCHR Representative to Iraq, Ms Danielle Bell

For media queries:

UNICEF Chief of Communications, Zeina Awad, [email protected]

UNICEF Digital Communication Specialist, Innocent Kafembe,[email protected]

UNFPA Communications Specialist, Salwa Moussa, [email protected]

UNAMI Human Rights Office, Monica Michelle Kemanzi Women and Minority Rights Team Leader, [email protected]

Related Content

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UNICEF Iraq Humanitarian Situation Report No. 1, 01 January-31 December 2023

Humanitarian implementation plan (hip) iraq (echo/irq/bud/2024/91000) - year 2024 version 1 – 18/12/2023, iraq: cross-cutting needs assessment (ccna) key multi-sectoral findings (january 2024), humanitarian action for children 2024 - iraq.

My Voice, Our Equal Future

Progress for adolescent girls has not kept pace with the realities they face today, and COVID-19 has reinforced many of these gaps. This year, under the theme, "My Voice, Our Equal Future", let's seize the opportunity to be inspired by what adolescent girls see as the change they want, the solutions- big and small- they are leading and demanding across the globe.

In 2020, we commemorate 25 years since the adoption of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action - the global agenda for advancing the rights and empowerment of women and girls, everywhere. Generation Equality was also launched in early 2020 as a multi-year, multi-partner campaign and movement for bold action on gender equality. A clear narrative and actions related to the needs and opportunities of adolescent girls and their solutions is central to the Generation Equality mission.

As adolescent girls worldwide assert their power as change-makers, International Day of the Girl 2020 will focus on their demands to:

Live free from gender-based violence, harmful practices, and HIV and AIDS

Learn new skills towards the futures they choose

Lead as a generation of activists accelerating social change

Ways to get involved

Share stories of inspiring adolescent girls or girl-led organizations who are developing innovative solutions or leading efforts towards positive social change, including gender equality, in their communities and nations. Let's amplify their leadership, actions and impact to inspire others.

Participate in a youth-led digital activation launching on International Day of the Girl. Young people across the world are developing a digital activism campaign, aiming to raise the diversity of girls' voices and their vision for a reimagined future.

In 1995 at the World Conference on Women in Beijing countries unanimously adopted the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action - the most progressive blueprint ever for advancing the rights of not only women but girls. The Beijing Declaration is the first to specifically call out girls' rights.

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

The International Day of the Girl Child focuses attention on the need to address the challenges girls face and to promote girls' empowerment and the fulfilment of their human rights.

Adolescent girls have the right to a safe, educated, and healthy life, not only during these critical formative years, but also as they mature into women. If effectively supported during the adolescent years, girls have the potential to change the world - both as the empowered girls of today and as tomorrow's workers, mothers, entrepreneurs, mentors, household heads, and political leaders. 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.

Girls are breaking boundaries and barriers posed by stereotypes and exclusion, including those directed at children with disabilities and those living in marginalized communities. As entrepreneurs, innovators and initiators of global movements, girls are creating a world that is relevant for them and future generations.

The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and its 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) adopted by world leaders in 2015, embody a roadmap for progress that is sustainable and leaves no one behind.

Achieving gender equality and women's empowerment is integral to each of the 17 goals. Only by ensuring the rights of women and girls across all the goals will we get to justice and inclusion, economies that work for all, and sustaining our shared environment now and for future generations.

https://www.un.org/en/observances/girl-child-day

Read the original article on UNECA .

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My voice, our equal future

This International Day of the Girl, UNICEF is calling for everyone to support the theme: ‘My voice, our equal future’.

Two participants in our Pass It Back program, See Vang, a 16-year-old female player from Laos and Hai, a 17-year-old coach from Vietnam, wrote letters celebrating what International Day of the Girl means to them, the importance of role models and why girls should raise their voice for an equal future.

A letter from See Vang

my voice our equal future essay in english

See Vang in green, highfive-ing with a female rugby player during a trip to Hong Kong

Hello everyone,

During this celebration, I want to tell you about my role model, Mrs. Lao Khang.

As a Pass It Back player with the Lao Rugby Federation for 2 years, I played for Team Mou Pa (the Wild Boars). At first, when I joined the team as a player, I was very shy and I had no confidence in myself.

Lao Khang’s story inspired me because she is a good person. Lao Khang has a lot of rugby experience and she is very brave. I would like to follow her in rugby and in her work. I work hard to complete my work at home and for my family so that I can attend all rugby trainings and never miss.

Lao Khang is an honest person who works hard. All of these reasons make me want to be like her. Also she is a role model for others in our community and so I will work hard to be a role model in my community too.

I will take all the experiences I have gained from the activities and my role models to improve myself so I will have more confidence.

Thank you. 

A letter from Hai

my voice our equal future essay in english

Hai at her first Coach Training in Vietnam in July 2019

Dear friends,

Gender equality has been embraced around the world for a long time now. However, in some places, gender prejudices still exist, sometimes leading to heated arguments. When I joined Pass It Back, I learnt more about gender through the Understanding Gender curriculum. 

One time, while playing sports, I had an argument about gender discrimination. It was when I was playing football in my village’s playground with a group that had only two girls and mostly boys at the same age or younger than me.

Apart from us, many other male adults also came there every afternoon to play football, volleyball and other games. However, there were very few little girls and women – most of the time, we had only around 5-6 girls. 

That day, when I was playing, a lady standing nearby looked at us and said: “What kind of girl are you who plays football? Do you see any other girls playing football here? Go home and cook for your parents. Your parents should have given birth to a boy.” 

Hearing those words, I was furious and frustrated. I felt like I was being looked down on. Yet, I tried to keep calm and told her: “I am playing because I have finished all my housework.

“ Also, men and women are equal now. If boys can play then girls can play too. Boys are not better than girls. You also have a daughter. Do you want to see her spend time and have fun with her friends?” She didn’t reply. 

Some time later, it seemed like she had changed her mind and even encouraged her daughter to play sports. Day after day, more and more girls came to the playground to play not only football but also many other fun games. So, what do you think speaking up means? What would happen if we don’t let our voice be heard?

I think speaking up is to express our opinions about a certain issue. However, many people hesitate to speak their mind because they are worried about how other people will react. Nevertheless, if you stay silent, people might never abandon their outdated prejudices. Let’s speak up at the right time, in the right place, to protect your own rights and the rights of other girls.  

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My Voice, Our Equal Future

my voice our equal future essay in english

In the last decade, the world has been wowed by girl power like never before.  From Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousefzou for her courage shown to promote the education of girls under extreme difficulty, to environmental gladiator Greta Thurnberg, girls are making a significant new impact on our world.  Zimbabwe also has its girl child heroes: motocross champion Tanya Muzinda; child prodigy Taida Mupara who is attending medical school at the tender age of 14.  Girls are finding their voices which they have been denied for centuries.  Girls are showing the world that once they are allowed to have a voice, they are can initiate change:  change not only for the status of girls and women, but for benefit the whole of humankind.

On the 11 th  of October 2011, by Resolution 66/170, the United Nations General Assembly earmarked the day to be commemorated as International Day of the Girl Child.  The day is also known as Girls Day.  It echoes the blueprint for advancement of progressive rights for women and girls established by the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action exactly 25 years ago.

This Year’s Theme

This year, the theme for the day is  “My voice, our equal future”.  The theme is a call to recognise that in empowering the girl child, a better and more equal future is created not only for her but for the entire community. The theme highlights the importance of strengthening and bettering the life of the girl child. In changing her world today, we can transform the world for all tomorrow. When the conference in Beijing was held 25 years ago, governments promised girls all over the world that they would safeguard girls’ equal rights and ensure girls reached their full potential. The time to take stock of that progress has come.

Predicament of Girls in Zimbabwe

According to Relief Web  [said t o be the largest humanitarian information portal in the world with its parent organisation being United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs]  there are about 130 million girls of school going age world-wide who do not attend school.  This number is predicted to rise by 11 million by year end due to the long-term effects of COVID-19.  According to The Borgen Project  [a non-profit organisation the focus of which is to bring political attention to extreme poverty in the world]  Zimbabwe is going backwards when it comes to the enrolment of girls in school.  The organisation says this is because of the increase in rural poverty rates causing parents to opt to educate their boy children over their girl children.  Furthermore,  according to both Relief Web and Zimstat, 20% of the children in Harare are believed to be child labourers.  A great number of these children are often taken into domestic work as child minders or housemaids.  According to UNICEF data and Girls Not Brides data, 32% of girls in Zimbabwe are married before the age of 18 and 4% are married before the age of 15.  The story of the girl child’s success is cut short by such practices.  They show how vulnerable they are and even such achievements that have been made are disproportionately affected by factors such as Covid-19 and economic recession.

Laws that Affect Girls in Zimbabwe

Under Zimbabwean law girls have the right to basic education under the Constitution. Most recently under the new Education Act, girls have the right to attend school after pregnancy. It is important that lawmakers be commended for this effort at this point, it allows for girls that get pregnant to be able to continue with their education and so give them a chance to better their own lives. ZimStat however notes that about 1.2 million children end up being turned away from school as a result of not being able to afford school fees.

The Next 25 years

Most societies have for centuries suppressed equal opportunities for the girl child.  The statistics that we have highlighted above indicate that there is a lot more that needs to be done when it comes to empowering the girl child and allowing her to have a voice towards her future.  We therefore call on all players – from Churches to the Ministry of Youth to the Ministry of Health and Child Care – to make sure that the next 25 years for the girl child need to be better than the last 25.  Change in educating and uplifting the girl child needs not only to be on paper but must be backed by real and practical effort and results.

As we commemorate this day and celebrate girl heroes, let us take time to remember the girls that are the uncelebrated and often unseen.  Those that have forfeited education in order to support their families and young siblings and those that have been forced down a path with no future for them.  May we all realise that it is our duty to keep the dream of the girl child alive and that by giving her a voice and an equal future we are enriching our nation for generations. May the efforts of the 30 000 Beijing Human Rights defenders never go to waste.

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my voice our equal future essay in english

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My Voice, Our Equal Future

  • October 3, 2020
  • 3 minute read
“My Voice, Our Equal Future”

International Day of the Girl Child exists to raise awareness of the unique challenges girls face while promoting girls’ empowerment and the fulfillment of their human rights. This year’s theme is “My voice, our equal future”. Here’s a picture of what an equal future could look like.

For starters, it looks like…

Families no longer preferring sons over daughters and putting an end to sex-selective abortion and female infanticide

Saving 140 million girls

Every girl, in every corner of this earth having access to an education

Investing in 130 million girls

Child marriage no longer being remotely possible

Preserving the childhood of 12 million girls per year

Every girl living free and fearless from violence like female genital mutilation and forced sex

Fulfilling the human rights of every living girl

A world that champions girls to be the world-changers they were created to be.

Producing a generation of young leaders shifting history

Malala Yousafzai is one young girl who has used her voice to advocate for an equal future. She was born in Pakistan, a patriarchal society where sons are more valued than daughters. However, her father exceptionally determined to give Malala every opportunity for her success. Early on in her adolescence, Malala began advocating for girls’ right to education. Because of this, Malala was shot in the head while she was aboard a school bus in 2012. She survived and continues to use her voice to fight for the next generation of girls. 

“There are two powers in the world; one is the sword and the other is the pen. There is a third power stronger than both, that of women.”- Malala Yousafzai

Malala became the youngest Nobel Peace Prize winner, started the Malala Fund, and graduated from Oxford University. When girls are afforded the opportunities and the empowerment they deserve, the world is gifted with forerunners like Malala that are leading the way into a more sustainable, equal, and thriving world. 

If you’d like to participate in the International Day of the Girl Child, start by engaging in personal reflection. Here are some prompts:

  • In what ways are men and women unequal in my worldview or values?
  • In what ways do I participate in fueling the narrative of gender inequality?
  • In my areas of influence, how can I empower and amplify voices of (other) girls and women?
  • Is there anything I can use my voice to advocate for?

Paula Sampang – My story

I am a Theology student at Ambrose University called into full-time ministry. I feel a strong call on my life to lead the church into fulfilling her role in God’s barrier-breaking mission. However, many are uncomfortable with the notion that God has called me, a woman into church leadership. I once had an older woman who I admired tell me I couldn’t be a pastor because it was dishonoring to God and men. I am thankful that God has redeemed that situation through several people who have affirmed me in my vocational choice. These people see my gender and my leadership gifts as complementary not as incompatible. I desire to impart the same empowerment and affirmation for girls around the globe. 

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COMMENTS

  1. My Voice, Our Equal Future!

    Transferable skills, such as stress reduction, emotional regulation, decision-making, goal setting, critical and creative thinking, conflict resolution and assertive communication help promote self-esteem and self-confidence that will last a lifetime. UNICEF/UNI309826// Frank Dejongh

  2. "MY VOICE, OUR EQUAL FUTURE"

    "My voice, our equal future" Many times a girl`s voice has been misunderstood and her 'no' has been understood as a 'yes' and her 'yes' at times regarded as a 'no.' This creates a communication gap and where there is a loophole in communication, it is close to impossible to get anything done. You don't believe?

  3. My voice, our equal future

    Theme: My voice, our equal future International Day of the Girl (IDG) 2020- 11 October - is a key activation moment for all of us to raise up the diverse range of adolescent girls' voices and actions for an equal future.

  4. My Voice, Our Equal Future!

    Karim Hamed UNICEF/Egypt 2021/Ahmed Hayman Available in: English العربية 24 October 2021 Girls are change makers and world shapers! When girls speak up, they are a powerful force to be reckoned with.

  5. International Day of the Girl Child 2020: My Voice, Our Equal Future

    That's why October 11 isn't just an ordinary day for me. It's my birthday and a day dedicated to girls around the world by the United Nations. This year's theme — my voice, our equal future — will acknowledge their struggles and amplify their voices as they stand up for their rights.

  6. UNSDG

    By raising our voices, we ensure an equal future for all girls in our country," she says. A passionate advocate for women's rights, she is studying midwifery with the intention of specializing in gynecological obstetrics to ensure that disadvantaged girls and women have access to quality reproductive health services.

  7. My voice, our equal future

    07 Oct 2020. Share. This International Day of the Girl on 11 October 2020, UNICEF called for everyone to support the theme: 'My voice, our equal future'. Two participants in ChildFund's Pass It Back program wrote letters celebrating what International Day of the Girl means to them, the importance of role models and why girls should raise ...

  8. "My Voice, Our Equal Future."

    "My Voice, Our Equal Future." Week 2 Theme - #dayofthegirl "My Voice, Our Equal Future. Every year on 11 October, the International Day of the Girl, UNICEF launches an annual campaign with girls to amplify their voices and stand up for their rights.

  9. Women and Career "Our Voice, Our Equal Future" Essay Competition 2020

    Entries are invited for the Women and Career "Our Voice, Our Equal Future" Essay Competition 2020. Are you a young girl between 12-19 years? Do you have an opinion on what your future should be like? Can you lend your voice towards creating a sustainable future for yourself and other generation of young girls?

  10. My Voice, Our Equal Future

    This year's International Day of the Girl Child was commemorated under the theme, "My Voice, Our Equal Future." We celebrated the milestones we have realized in making the world a better place for girls to become better leaders, entrepreneurs and change-makers, but also pondered upon the challenges the girl child continues to face across board.

  11. "My voice, our equal future"

    2020-10-11 Getting girls to stay in school is a cornerstone for wider development of society. Humana People to People celebrates International Day of the Girl Child on 11 October. In 2020, the theme for the day is "My voice, our equal future". Humana People to People supports young girls and adolescent girls to access education in the global south.

  12. International Day of the Girl Child 2020: My Voice, Our Equal Future

    In Nigeria, less than half of all school-age girls are enrolled in, and graduate, from school. At Give Girls A Chance (GGAC), we believe that educating girls is the single most powerful investment to shape a better future for Nigeria. We started in 2016 with the goal of increasing young girls' access to quality education in Nigeria.

  13. My voice, our equal future: International Day of the Girl 2020

    "My voice, our equal future", let's seize the opportunity to reimagine a better world inspired by adolescent girls - energized and recognized, counted and invested in. EMpower is proud to join the global community and celebrate Day of the Girl 2020. This day was first recognized 25 years ago and marks a milestone for adding girls ...

  14. International Day of the Girl Child: Raising girls' and young women's

    This year, under the theme 'My Voice, Our Equal Future', the International Day of the Girl Child presents an opportunity to be inspired by all the young and adolescent girls demanding change across the globe. It is also a time to reflect upon the importance of standing by these girls as they advocate for their rights.

  15. International Day of The Girl Child: My Voice, Our Equal Future

    This year's theme: "My voice, our equal future" aims to reimagine a better world inspired and led by adolescent girls to ensure equality across all sectors. Before taking a forward look at what lies ahead for the girl child, it is expedient to have a retrospective look at the progress made in the past 25 years, what has been achieved and ...

  16. My Voice, Our Equal Future: Girls Speak to Climate Change

    My Voice, Our Equal Future: Girls Speak to Climate Change. This event joins the themes of International Day of the Girl 2021 and CSW66. It provides space for a global conversation among girls, who will discuss their contributions to climate justice, the obstacles they see and their hopes for the future. In Our Common Agenda, António Guterres ...

  17. Joint Statement: International Day of the Girl Child 2020

    This year, the global theme is "My Voice, Our Equal Future," a reminder to listen to girls , understand the changes they want to see and to ensure that all of them have an equal...

  18. My Voice, Our Equal Future

    This year, under the theme, "My Voice, Our Equal Future", let's seize the opportunity to be inspired by what adolescent girls see as the change they want, the solutions- big and small- they are...

  19. My voice, our equal future

    My voice, our equal future. This International Day of the Girl, UNICEF is calling for everyone to support the theme: 'My voice, our equal future'. Two participants in our Pass It Back program, See Vang, a 16-year-old female player from Laos and Hai, a 17-year-old coach from Vietnam, wrote letters celebrating what International Day of the ...

  20. My Voice, Our Equal Future

    This Year's Theme This year, the theme for the day is "My voice, our equal future". The theme is a call to recognise that in empowering the girl child, a better and more equal future is created not only for her but for the entire community. The theme highlights the importance of strengthening and bettering the life of the girl child.

  21. My Voice, our Equal Future by Adebola Aderibigbe

    Adebola shares her perspective on the theme for the International Day of the Girl Child 2020: My Voice, Our Equal Future.

  22. My Voice, Our Equal Future: Girls Speak to Climate Change

    This event, held parallel to the 66th UN Commission on the Status of Women, was sponsored by the Society of the Sacred Heart, the Congregation of Our Lady of...

  23. My Voice, Our Equal Future

    3 minute read "My Voice, Our Equal Future" International Day of the Girl Child exists to raise awareness of the unique challenges girls face while promoting girls' empowerment and the fulfillment of their human rights. This year's theme is "My voice, our equal future". Here's a picture of what an equal future could look like.