Whether it's because of a lack of education, health care, sexual assault, or a whole host of other issues, so many young girls around the world are held back. And that's why the United Nations made Oct. 11 the International Day of the Girl, so people around the world can celebrate and empower young girls and push for progress to make every girl's life better. So how can you help on the International Day of the Girl and do your part? There are actually lots of ways.
Representatives from the U.N. said in a statement:
On the International Day of the Girl Child, let us commit to investing in skills training and education for girls and livelihood activities for young women around the world who are facing crises. Far from being passive recipients of assistance, these girls are leaders who will use the skills that they develop today to rebuild their communities, and create a better future for all of us.
How can you not get behind that? A day dedicated to empowering young women is absolutely necessary. And with 128.6 million people that will need humanitarian assistance and three quarters of them are women and children, they'll be the most vulnerable going forward. So here are some things you can do to make sure they're taken care of.
Donate To International Charities That Support Girls
There are tons of charities and foundations that do great work for young women, whether it's putting an end to child marriage, educating young women, or helping them start businesses.
Empower Young Girls Locally
You don't have to think globally if you know there are things you can do locally to help empower young women. Donate to local charities that support young women in your area or to food banks, so young girls don't go to school hungry. You can also sit down with young girls around you and talk to them about these issues, or let them vent to you about their own stuff and pick their brains.
The more we educate girls and inform them that they, indeed, have a voice, the more they might use it in the future. And that's what the day is all about.
If you need help finding a starting place to empower the young girls in your life, all you have to do is visit DayOfTheGirl.org and download resources that will help you talk to friends and family about this kind of advocacy. On Twitter, the hashtag #DayOfTheGirl is the official way to keep track of the conversation and see what other people are doing to help on International Day of Girls.
When you look at the numbers, it's pretty staggering at how many young girls are at risk. According to the U.N. information page of the day, girl are 2.5 times more likely than boys to miss school during disasters and displaced young girls in humanitarian crises are often married off as a way to ensure their "safety." In 2013, for example, there was a rise in the percentage of Syrian girl refugees in Jordan being married before 18 to more than 50 percent after the conflict started in the region.
Even in the United States, natural disasters can leave young girls vulnerable to sexual assault or having to step in and parent younger siblings instead of going back to their activities in some cases. Lack of affordable health care, child care, and education also hurts young girls right here in the United States. So definitely take some time on Oct. 11, and every day, to talk about all the ways you can help empower young girls and make every girl's life across the world better.
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