UNICEF and ICC partner to promote equal opportunities for girls and boys in South Asia

08 March 2022
UNICEF/UN0278939/Katragadda (File Photo)

NEW DELHI/KATHMANDU, 8 March 2022 - UNICEF and ICC have joined hands to promote equal opportunities for girls and boys in South Asia. Launched today at the Australia v Pakistan match during the ICC Women’s Cricket World Cup 2022 in New Zealand, the campaign will engage players and audiences to celebrate women and girls and take a pledge to be a champion for them on and off the field. The campaign will extend through the ICC World Cup as well as T20 World Cup 2022.

Harmful gender norms lead to gender discrimination, deepening the gender divide as adolescence sets in. The COVID-19 pandemic has intensified these inequalities in South Asia.  With a spike in domestic violence, child marriages and loss of employment, a large proportion of the social and economic toll is and will continue to be paid by the region’s girls and women.

The UNICEF-ICC partnership intends to highlight girls from all walks of life who have broken these barriers and are trailblazers in their communities and all professions, asserting their role as change-makers and leaders.

UNICEF’s South Asia Regional Director, George Laryea-Adjei, said, “Equal opportunities for both girls and boys allow all children to reach their full potential. Despite progress, millions of girls continue to face discrimination at home, school and workplace. The pandemic has reversed the gains made in gender equality in many ways. We must bear in mind that when girls do better, societies do better. Each one of us must continue to speak up for equal opportunities for girls and women in all fields. By championing girls in sports, the ICC and UNICEF partnership will reach millions with powerful messages across the tournaments.”

ICC Chief Executive, Geoff Allardice said, “Cricket has the incredible power and reach to raise awareness and effect change and we’re proud to partner with UNICEF as part of 100% Cricket Year of Women’s Cricket to #IDeclare our commitment to empowering women and girls through cricket.” “We are committed to gender equity and using the platform of our sport to promote equal opportunities for girls and boys is a great way of doing this. We will also focus all of our Cricket 4Good efforts on this too, ensuring we’re giving as many women and girls the chance to grow through our game,” he added.

The campaign urges individual action by players and audiences to support gender equality using the hashtag, #IDeclare.

The objective of the partnership is to make strategic use of the power of cricket to reach billions of cricket fans across the globe with gender transformative messages.  The partnership reflects ICC’s commitment to growing the game of cricket for girls and women and UNICEF’s commitment to creating equal opportunities for every girl and boy. ICC will use its global platforms including its broadcast and digital channels to amplify and support the messages and drive the message on championing girls in sports and in society. The messages will be shared on UNICEF and ICC digital channels, websites, player and commentator endorsement of key messages and TV spots for broadcast on social media channels.

Cricket fans are urged to visit the ICC and UNICEF South Asia online and digital channels to find out more about how they can get involved in the campaign.  


Media contacts

Eliane Luthi
Regional Chief of Communication
UNICEF Regional Office for South Asia
Tel: +977-98010 30076
Alka Gupta
Communication Specialist
Tel: +91-730 325 9183


UNICEF works in some of the world’s toughest places, to reach the world’s most disadvantaged children. Across more than 190 countries and territories, we work for every child, everywhere, to build a better world for everyone. 

UNICEF’s Regional Office for South Asia (ROSA) works with UNICEF Country Offices in Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, the Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka to help to save children’s lives, defend their rights, and help them fulfil their potential. For more information about UNICEF’s work for children in South Asia, visit www.unicef.org/rosa and follow UNICEF ROSA on Twitter and Facebook.

For more information about COVID-19, click here.