Region and country activities
Australia: The Australian Council for International Development, in partnership with Plan International and the UN Information Centre, is organizing a reception with the Prime Minister of Australia to celebrate girls around the world.
Bangladesh: The Honourable State Minister of the Ministry of Women and Children Affairs (MOWCA), Dr. Shirin Sharmin Chaudhury, is joining the high level panel on the International Day of the Girl Child at the UN Secretariat in New York on 11 October. In addition, MOWCA observed Girl Child Day on 30 September in Bangladesh, which is a longstanding part of CRC observance week. This year, Bangladesh Shishu Academy (BSA) of MOWCA has undertaken several activities to celebrate the Day of the Girl. This includes: a decorated rally from National Museum to Bangladesh Shishu Academy; a discussion session on the girl child by BSA; and a cultural programme by the children of BSA, as well as a prize giving ceremony. Communication for Development (C4D) and Child Protection Sections of UNICEF Bangladesh are working with the Enabling Environment for Child Rights (EECR) Project of the Ministry of Women and Children Affairs; one of the three harmful practices addressed will be child marriage.
Belgium: UNICEF Brussels, UN Women, and Plan EU are partnering to organize activities around IDGC, which are aimed at strengthening EU support on the issue of child marriage.
Bolivia: Within the framework of the UNiTE campaign, on 11 October the country office will issue a press release drawing attention on human rights issues affecting Bolivian girls. This includes six slide posters on strategic priorities to guarantee the fulfillment of girls’ and adolescents’ rights. UNICEF will participate in a public event organized by Plan International to present studies and information on the girl child. UNICEF also plans to organize a TV show.
Cuba: UNICEF and UNFPA are organizing activities at the Girl and Boy Reference Center to commemorate IDGC, including an arts and literature contest “Girls in Action.” A closing activity on 11 October will include the performance of the Children's Theater Group "La Colmenita" in Central Havana, with media coverage.
Ecuador: UNICEF, UNFPA, UN Women and Plan International will launch a campaign for the girl child. A conference will be held to commemorate IDGC, including three lectures with presentations from World Vision, UNFPA, and Plan International, facilitated by UNICEF’s Communication Specialist. Four simultaneous panels will take place on education, violence, pregnancy, and domestic work. UNICEF Education Specialist will participate in the panel on education. A special workshop will be held for girls and adolescents, who will address letters to the audience. A group of participant girls will be welcomed by the General Commission of the National Assembly in an official meeting. All events will be covered by the media for longer term impact.
El Salvador: The UN Resident Coordinator will organize a press conference in El Salvador around IDGC. A forum with public institutions and civil society organizations will also be held, focused on adolescent pregnancy. The country office will organize a sensitization activity for UN personnel. Banners will be distributed throughout the city on 10 October; on 11 October, Plan International will organize an event to commemorate the day.
Ethiopia: To commemorate IDGC, the Ministry of Women, Children and Youth Affairs and the United Nations in Ethiopia will call upon all stakeholders to join hands with them to eliminate child marriage in Ethiopia. A joint press release will also be released.
Haiti: UNICEF will organize an awareness-raising activity, with the participation of Plan International Haiti and a young UNICEF ambassador. UNICEF will organize a photo exhibition of girls, with key messages around education, protection, and early pregnancy and its consequences on girls’ education.
Honduras: IDGC activities will be organized throughout the day of 11 October. Activities include: a special “Day of the Girl Child” TV debate program; official presentation of IDGC opening for the forum “Situation analysis of Honduran girls for the realization of their rights,” with speakers representing UNICEF, UNFPA and Plan International, as well as civil society and government. Exhibitions, visual arts, TV interviews and reports, musical and dance performances, and photo exhibits will also be organized. Outside the capital, UNICEF, UNFPA and Plan International will help facilitate cultural and artistic activities in several municipalities. A forum on Gender Equality by the Municipal Program for Children, Adolescents and Youth will also be held. UNICEF and UNFPA representatives will conduct various interviews prior to IDGC.
Liberia: UN JPAG Liberia will hold an event with the Minister of Gender to commemorate IDGC.
Malawi: UNICEF Malawi has established an inter-sectoral working group for the Day, focused on the theme of ending child marriage. A public debate will be held live on radio and television, opened with a key note address made by Minister of Gender, Child Development and Social Services. A National Address will also be made by State President, along with a planned Symposium and National Conference.
Mexico: On 10 October, UNICEF will participate in a special forum in the Senate Human Rights Commission and Gender Equality Commission to celebrate IDGC. On 11 October, UNICEF will support participation of adolescent girls in a special session of the Senate Human Rights Commission and Gender Equality Commission, as well as provide opening remarks and a full presentation at the National Human Rights Commission special forum for the IDGC. The focus will be on early marriage, as well as early pregnancy and maternal health.
Moldova: The UN in Moldova will release the SG’s message on IDGC to partners, media and agencies, available in English, Russian, and Romanian.
Nepal: The Nepal National Planning Commission, UNICEF and the UN Adolescent girl task force members, Plan, Save the Children and other national NGOs, are organizing a national level event on IDGC, with a particular focus on the holistic adolescent development, especially for girls. The initiative aims to develop a multi-sectoral national plan of action on holistic adolescent development for next 5 years, and includes consultations with adolescents and other relevant stakeholders from up to 34 districts. The Nepal country office has also started a pre-event campaign to popularize the day.
Nicaragua: UNICEF Nicaragua will focus IDGC activities on the issue of teen pregnancy, which impacts the health, education, and rights of children and adolescents. UNICEF will join Plan International in a press conference to launch their publication “Por ser Niña.”
Niger: UNICEF Niger will launch a series of activities through a collaborative effort with UNFPA, UN Women, and the Ministry of Population, Women Protection and Child Protection. Activities include: working with Parliamentarians to advocate for the adoption of a law protecting girls in schools, which also implies delaying the age of marriage; a TV debate with adolescent girls and boys, as well as relevant ministries, to discuss issues related adolescents, particularly girls’ education and child marriage; broadcasting of a video documentary on girls’ education and child marriage (produced by UNICEF and UNFPA) on national television; production of a short video on adolescent girls who have experienced human rights violations, but have also received support; and UN meetings with Ministry officials to reaffirm support for the empowerment of adolescent girls.
Pakistan: To commemorate IDGC, the UN Adolescent Girls task Force (AGTF) in Pakistan has launched a call for proposals to national NGOs, youth led organizations/networks and community based organizations active in the promotion of adolescent rights in Pakistan. Organizations have the opportunity to submit proposals on the topic of preventing and ending child marriage. UNICEF and UNFPA will offer small grants up to $20,000 to selected organizations to carry out any programmatic interventions targeting the most marginalized and excluded adolescent girls in the country.
Panama: UNICEF, UNFPA, Plan International, and other partners will issue an opinion piece on IDGC for the media and work together on radio opportunities. On October 11, UNICEF, UNFPA, UN Women and the UNiTE campaign will also organize a webinar with the last trends on early pregnancy in the region.
Sri Lanka: The Ministry of Child Development and Women's Affairs is hosting a children's art exhibition on the 11 October to mark IDGC. The event will commence with messages from the Minister of Child Development and Women's Affairs and Secretary to the Ministry in the presence of the Hon. First Lady. A children's cultural event is also planned at this event; UNICEF will use the award winning drawing in a future publication. In addition, on the 10 October, the Gender Based Violence forum –consisting of UN, international and national NGOs – has arranged a media briefing on the “Girl Child in Sri Lanka - Current Status and Challenges.” A legal expert, a representative from the police and a UN staff member will represent the forum at the media briefing.
Sudan: UNICEF Sudan and the National Council for Child Welfare (NCCW) issued a press release (in Arabic and English) on IDGC on 11 October, calling for an end to child marriage. NCCW in partnership with UNICEF is also leading a national study on knowledge, attitudes and practices relating to child marriage. It will include conducting a sample survey in the following four states: South Darfur, Gedaref, West Darfur and Khartoum. The results of the study will guide programme interventions supported by both UNICEF and NCCW. Additionally, UNFPA and the Ministry of Religious Guidance have organized a workshop bringing together representatives from the Ministry of Welfare and Social Security, the Bureau of Religious Ulama, the Unit of Violence against Women, and civil society to increase advocacy for legislative reform that does not contradict with positive religious values.
Switzerland: UNICEF in Geneva will participate as a co-sponsor in a mission briefing at the UN, along with the World Health Organization, UNFPA, the Governments of Netherlands, Denmark and Ethiopia (among possibly others), and civil society organizations YWCA and Girls Not Brides. The event will provide a forum for Member States, UN Agencies and other stakeholders to discuss the root causes of child marriage and ways to end the practice.
TACRO, The Americas & Caribbean Regional Office: The regional offices in the Americas and the Caribbean of UNICEF, UNFPA, UN Women, and the Secretary-General UNiTE to End Violence against Women campaign will issue a press release around IDGC. The press release will focus on girls and adolescent girls in Latin America, especially those who face early pregnancy or gender-based violence. On 11 October, TACRO will also hold a webinar on adolescent pregnancy and early marriage in Latin America, titled “Embarazo adolescente y unión temprana en América Latina: datos y reflexiones en torno a la problemática.”
Thailand: IDGC activities include a celebration of IDGC and the “Because I am a Girl” report launch, co-hosted by Plan Thailand and East Asia Pacific (EAP) Regional UN Girl’s Education Initiative (UNGEI). A high level event will also be held in Bangkok, with participation from the Regional Focal Point for EAP UNGEI and the UNICEF Thailand Country Office Representative. An opinion piece will be featured in Bangkok Post/The Nation, and an EAP/South Asia UNGEI joint statement, along with two regional fact sheets will be released on 11 October. An EAP UNGEI newsletter “Voices of Girls” will be released in late October. Several other events will also be co-hosted by the UN and Plan Thailand, including interviews with Thai women and girls, a screening of short films, and a performance.
Uganda: The Uganda Parliamentary Forum for Children (UPFC) in partnership with U-report has surveyed 147,000 youth and children on the challenges they face, as well as on the issue of child marriage. The U-Report will be delivered to all Members of Parliament, the Ministry of Gender, and distributed at an event planned in Kampala on 11 October to commemorate IDGC. The report includes poll results under the Ugandan Ministry of Gender adapted theme “Too Young to Marry, End Child Marriage and Teenage Pregnancy,” as well as an interview with the UN Resident Coordinator on IDGC. The report will also be disseminated at the high level panel being organized by UNICEF, UNFPA, UN Women and Girls Not Brides at the UN Secretariat in New York.