Since then, the date has served as a key global moment “to celebrate the power of girls and highlight the barriers they face.”
What do those barriers look like? They can be anything from being denied education and a lack of sanitary services, to child marriage, sex trafficking and FGM (female genital mutilation).
This year, the theme is GirlForce: Unscripted and Unstoppable with which the UN celebrates “achievements by, with and for girls since the adoption of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action”.
If you’re in a position to do so, consider starting a youth mentorship or internship programme at your business to help girls get experience in the professional world.
If you are a woman, consider becoming a Big Sister (a mentor to a younger girl) with Big Brothers Big Sisters International, or reach out to local organisations to see how you can get involved.
Put your money to use by donating to an organisation that supports girls and women in your community.
Girls who are sleeping rough often struggle a lot due to lack of proper sanitary products, so consider donating tampons, pads, ibuprofen and other female sanitary products to a local shelter that works with the homeless.
Join Plan International UK in raising awareness about issues facing girls around the world!
Here are some initiatives you can take part in:
Source: Plan International
If you’ve never stopped to think about how you talk to young girls, it’s time to start. As a culture, we have a tendency to tell little girls how cute or pretty they are, or to compliment them on their clothes or their hair, while we tend to talk to little boys more about what they’re doing (think “what a pretty dress!” vs “what’s that you’re playing with?”).
Talking to girls this way reinforces the idea that a girl’s appearance is the most interesting thing about her. It’s part of why so many girls start worrying about the way they look at a young age, and reinforces the association between appearance and worth.
Instead, try asking them questions about what they’re reading, what they’re studying in school, or what they think about a topic of interest. You might be surprised to hear what they have to say!
From Success Resources to all of the young girls out there, you can be whatever you want to be—we believe in you!