International Day of the Girl Child
by Gretchen Kail, Board Member UNA-SNY
The first-ever International Day of the Girl Child will be observed on 11 October 2012, as designated by the UN General Assembly.
This important occasion is the first year the UN will collectively recognize the issue of child marriage by addressing the issue as a human rights violation and its consequences as a prerequisite to realize the vast potential of girls and young women.
At the UN Headquarters, UN Funds, such as UNFPA, will be organizing activities, including a high-level event and reception to raise awareness and spur action. UNFPA, for example, will curate and open a special exhibit on child marriage at the United Nations Headquarters on 11 October, and throughout 2012-2014.
The day is an opportunity for awareness raising and advocacy, evidence-based programming, generate new evidence and knowledge, and discuss recommendations to combat child marriage. It is also an important opportunity for States, UN partners, civil society and the private sector to collectively elevate joint efforts and attention to child marriage.