I'm a boy mom. Having two little boys, my life is bugs, mud, construction vehicles and cars. I spend a lot of time doing grass stained laundry, sweeping the floor and stepping on blocks. I love how they currently live in ignorant bliss and are given every opportunity to be and do what they want.
One thing I will be sure to introduce to my boys is that girls are equals. They are human beings, they are to be respected and girls deserve the same rights that boys do despite the differences.
However, I will also have to share with them that this is not the case in many developing parts of the world. The statistics of what many girls face is staggering:
70% of the one billion people living in extreme poverty are women and girls
Girls are three times more likely to be malnourished than boys
Globally, 66 million girls do not attend primary or secondary school
1 in 7 girls are married by the age of 15 and half of all girls in developing countries are mothers by the age of 18
Plan Canada's Because I am a Girl initiative is working to change the situations and conditions that girls in developing countries face on a daily basis. Because I Am a Girl creates sustainable projects in developing countries to improve girls’ access to clean water,
food, health care, education, and protection from violence and exploitation. It gives girls in developing countries a chance to have a more positive future.
October 11th has been designated International Day of the Girl.
It is a day to recognize girls' rights globally and to help ensure that girls get the investment and recognition they deserve as citizen and powerful agents of change within their own families, communities and nations.
I will be celebrating and supporting International Day of the Girl by wearing pink and sharing the important messages of the campaign with friends, family and co-workers and by spreading the news on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram using the hashtag #DayoftheGirl. Knowing that education is one of the best ways to encourage change, I will also be donating to the girls' scholarship to send a girl to school for a year.
I'm hoping you will join me.
Head over to the International Day of the Girls' website which gives you lots of ideas of how to celebrate the day and spread awareness for the cause.
Girls have the potential to change the world but they can’t do it without you.