Every year since 2012, October 11 has been marked as the International Day of the Girl by the United Nations in order to raise awareness for the different needs and challenges girls face, all over the world. In doing so, the UN also aims to promote girls’ empowerment and attainment of their human rights.
Each year, the UN chooses a theme to mark the day and this year, it’s GirlForce: Unscripted and Unstoppable. This theme was chosen to celebrate the adoption of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action after the Fourth World Conference on Women, which took place close to twenty-five years ago. Approximately 30 000 women and men from close to 200 countries attended this conference determined to recognize the fact that the rights of women and girls are human rights. According to the UN, the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action is the most comprehensive policy agenda for women’s empowerment and has lead to global movements on issues regarding women’s rights, including reproductive health rights and equal pay.
Today, these movements are continuing to be expanded and are being organized by and for young girls, to tackle issues such as child marriages, education inequality, gender-based violence, and issues regarding self-esteem. All of these movements showcase how girls are in fact, unscripted and unstoppable.
As a global community, it is each of our responsibilities to recognize gender disparity around us and use our voice to raise awareness because everyone is deserving of equality in their everyday lives.