International Day of the Girl Child

Girls in school in Haiti. UNICEF image.

About the Day

Since 2012, the United Nations marks 11 October as the ‘International Day of the Girl Child’. The day promotes girls' human rights, highlights gender inequalities that remain between girls and boys and addresses the various forms of discrimination and abuse suffered by girls around the world.

2014

This year, the theme is "Empowering adolescent girls: Ending the cycle of violence". UN Women Executive Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka will speak at an event at UNICEF House co-sponsored by UNICEF, UN Women, UNFPA and Plan International, from 12.30-2 p.m. [Invitation]Watch the livestream here.

Check out our special In Focus compilation on the Girl Child, one of the 12 critical areas of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action.

2013

Girls attend a computer class at San Jose, a rural secondary school in La Ceja del Tambo, Antioquia, Colombia.   Photo: © Charlotte Kesl / World Bank

The 2013 theme for the Day was “Innovating for Girls’ Education”. See our In Focus compilation for statements, feature stories, and details of our launch of the innovative “Voices against Violence” curriculum.


2012

See our In Focus compilation for the first International Day of the Girl Child in 2012, focused on the theme of ending child marriage.

Empowering girls today makes for a more prosperous tomorrow — Executive Director

Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka. (Photo: Marco Grob.)

To mark the International Day of the Girl Child, UN Women Executive Director Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka in her message highlights that violence against girls limits their opportunities and choices, threatening their futures and those of generations to come. She strongly calls for the ending of harmful practices such as sexual violence, early and child marriage, and female genital mutilation in order for all girls to reach their full potential.

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