Photo credit: Eliane Leoni
In 2018, 129 million girls were not in school. Even if their educational situation is improving worldwide, it is still far from being fair! The International Day of the Girl, celebrated on 11 October, is an opportunity to denounce the many discriminations they still suffer and to fight them.
Parity in schooling has only been achieved by less than two out of three countries in primary educationby one in two countries in lower secondary education and by one in four countries in upper secondary education. Although great strides have been made since 2000 to boost girls' enrolment in school, an estimated 129 million girls aged 6 to 17 worldwide are not in school.
This is due to multiple barriers such as the weight of cultural norms and practices, gender-based violence and early or forced marriage. But getting girls into school and ensuring that they can learn in a safe and supportive environment has many benefits for the girls themselves, their families, their communities and their countries.
Breaking down the barriers faced by girls
This year's International Day of the Girl is under the theme "Girls: A Free and Unstoppable Force", and aims tohelp girls to have a stronger voice and to defend their rights. We now know that investing in girls' secondary education, not just primary education, has a positive impact not only on families and their communities but also on the economy.
For Aide et Action, education is the best weapon to fight against injustice and break the barriers of stereotypes and exclusion. Projects "Girl-friendly schoolsAide et Action is multiplying its approaches to contribute to the elimination of gender disparities in primary and secondary education and to promote gender equality. The association works in particular to improve the school environment and promote teaching content that favors gender equity.
UNESCO recalls: " Adolescent girls have the right to a safe, healthy life and education, not only during their critical formative years, but also once they become women. If girls are nurtured through adolescence, they have the potential to change the world - future workers, mothers, entrepreneurs, mentors, heads of households, and political leaders. Investing in the realisation of adolescent girls' potential is a way to defend their rights today and ensure a more equitable and prosperous future.
A future in which they will have an equal share with half of humanity to solve the crises of climate change, political conflict, economic growth, disease prevention and global sustainability.