International Day of the Girl 2022: Get Involved!
International Day of the Girl is October 11, 2022, and we hope you’ll join us for the First Annual Power of the Pad: a virtual event you won’t forget with inspirational speaker, Marli Williams. This is a great opportunity to gather with other passionate people from around the world and celebrate International Day of the Girl. If you’re looking for something special to do in honor of girls, please RSVP today. It will be an event to remember.
More Ways to Get Involved
The theme for this year’s International Day of the Girl (as set by UNICEF) is “Our time is now – our rights, our future.” Currently, there are approximately 600 million adolescent girls (ages 10-18) worldwide, making up almost 8% of the world’s population. Girls are the leaders, thinkers, and change-makers of tomorrow, and they deserve our investment, time and attention.
UNICEF shared the following three ways for how you can get involved in protecting their rights and helping pave the way for their bright futures:
- Let girls lead by putting girls in the forefront of change efforts, hearing their voices, responding to their asks, and welcoming them in decision-making spaces.
- Provide resources for girls, including the networks and organizations that support their education and prioritize their mental and physical well-being.
- Strengthen services for girls at all times but especially in crisis response and recovery.
Below are some examples of how Days for Girls implements these points in our work:
Letting Girls Lead
At 8 years old, Lucy Mwenje, became an orphan and lived in an informal settlement in Kenya. When her period started, she had no means to manage it. Someone seeing her plight told her that a woman in the area manufactured washable pads. Lucy walked to this woman’s business and explained her situation, letting her know she had no money but desperately needed menstrual products. Upon hearing Lucy’s dilemma, the Enterprise leader, Christine Khamasi, gave her a DfG washable pad kit and shared with her accurate information about menstruation. Armed with a product and with knowledge, Lucy decided she wanted to volunteer to teach menstrual health education to other girls in the settlement. Six years later, Lucy is at the forefront of empowering girls in her community, hearing their needs for MH education, and using her voice to teach about periods. Lucy shares her story and how having access to menstrual products and accurate information about periods transformed her life and made her a leader in her community.
Resources for Girls
Poonam Pokhrel is a volunteer at DfG Nepal working as an Ambassador for Women’s Health. “Being a part of Days for Girls . . . is the warmest and most meaningful experience I have ever had,” she remarked. Poonam, equipped with the resources of menstrual knowledge and hygiene management, is able to speak out against harmful practices and taboos related to menstruation. Additionally, through the resources of education and menstrual products such as DfG Kits, girls like Poonam are uplifting their peers and inspiring them to bring about necessary changes in their own communities. Poonam and other girls at DfG Nepal are also empowering beneficiaries to make an appropriate choice regarding environmentally-friendly menstrual resources. DfG Ambassadors for Women’s Health, like Poonam, use DfG education and product resources to conduct school health programs to normalize menstruation and uproot myths and stereotypes surrounding it that are harming local girls. By utilizing these resources, girls are given the knowledge and tools they need to be able to menstruate with dignity and safety. Poonam recognizes the powerful effect these resources can have on girls. “Our small action,” she said, “can bring a ripple effect.”
Strengthening Services for Girls
On February 24, 2022, Russia launched a military invasion of Ukraine. Many people fled the country with little time to pack and without knowing where they were going. Being on the move means that access to water, soap, washing and drying facilities or privacy may not be consistently available. In response to this crisis and pressing need, our incredible Days for Girls volunteers stepped up and supplied Hybrid Kits so girls could choose the period product options (disposable or washable) that worked best for them. The Hybrid Kits provided choice, flexibility, and both short and long-term options as the girls’ circumstances changed. In times of crisis, it is vital to provide services to girls that strengthen them as they face difficult circumstances.
One girl can change the world. On this International Day of the Girl, celebrate her by doing what you can do to support girls around the world. As we all incorporate these uplifting elements into our work, we inspire girls to say, “Our time is now – our rights, our future.”