To help focus attention on girls’ rights and on the many challenges facing girls worldwide, the United Nations in 2011 established the International Day of the Girl Child .

Girls in places as varied as Syria and South Sudan continue to face sexual violence and annihilation. Millions more girls worldwide are still being married off before reaching their 15th birthdays, despite nearly ubiquitous national law now prohibiting girls’ marriage under the age of 18. Yet there have been tremendous strides over the last 15 years in improving child survival, access to primary school and recognition of girls’ rights.

WomenStrong International celebrates the 5th annual International Day of the Girl with joy at the distances traveled, while acknowledging and addressing directly the dangerous gaps yet to be filled in ensuring access to quality education, health care and life choices that will enable girls to thrive.

We welcome this Girls’ Day with four kinds of commemorations:

1. For those eager to help girls thrive, we’ve assembled a calendar of Girls Day activities and a list of organizations to support. Please view WomenStrong’s Girls’ Day calendar , and get involved!
2. We invite you to celebrate along with the girls and boys participating in our WomenStrong Girls’ Day programs in India, Kenya, Ghana and Haiti. You can read about their plans on our calendar and over the days to come, on our International Day of the Girl homepage .
3. Join the conversations now taking place in our [Girls’ Leadership Forum] that elevates the voices of girls from around the world as they consider issues surrounding women’s leadership in their own countries during this high-stakes election year in many nations.
4. After October 11, WomenStrong will also be publishing a summary report of Girls’ Day 2016, including stories on our events in India, Haiti, Ghana, and India; resources and toolkits for working with girls; key quotations from other girls’ day events; and more! Please check our International Day of the Girl homepage for updates.

We thank you for honoring girls on this special day, throughout the month of October, and every day; girls’ safety, health, education and opportunity will ensure a more peaceful and prosperous world, for ourselves, our children and theirs.

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