How to celebrate International Day of the Girl

Wednesday, Oct. 11, is International Day of the Girl, a day created by the United Nations in 2012 to highlight the challenges girls face around the world.

According to the UN, the day promotes the “empowerment” of the roughly 1.1 billion young girls currently living in 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 fulfillment of their human rights,” the UN’s mission statement reads.

The day is marked by events all over the world, from India to Kenya to Washington to Paris, put on by humanitarian organizations, nonprofits, and governments alike.

This year, the day’s theme is: “EmPOWER girls: Before, during and after conflict.”

“Every 10 minutes, somewhere in the world, an adolescent girl dies as a result of violence. In humanitarian emergencies, gender-based violence often increases, subjecting girls to sexual and physical violence, child marriage, exploitation and trafficking. Adolescent girls in conflict zones are 90 per cent more likely to be out of school when compared to girls in conflict-free countries, compromising their future prospects for work and financial independence as adults,” the UN said.

Those wanting to celebrate at a specific event in a specific city can visit to find one.

UNICEF also has a list of events around the world — they include a press conference on child marriage in Serbia and a football tournament in Ukraine.

PLAN International, which helped spearhead the International Day of the Girl, is urging participants to help #GirlsTakeover go viral on social media.

The humanitarian organization said girls will take over 600 leaders’ positions in 60 countries globally by stepping “into the shoes of presidents, mayors, head teachers, business leaders and more to show that girls should be free to dream and free to lead.”

Shelley Zalis, who has a company that works to advance womens’ standing in the corporate…

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