2016 World Population Day: Investing in Teenage Girls
By admin July 12, 2016

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July 11th was World Population Day, a day to focus attention on the urgency and importance of population issues. This year, the United Nations urged governments, businesses, and civil society to support and invest in teenage girls.

UNFPA concluded six points of why we should focus on investments in teenage girls:

  1. There are more young people today than at any other time in human history. Right now young people (aged 10 to 24) accounts for nearly 25 percent of the world’s population, which could bring great transformation to the world if they are well educated and provided with opportunities;
  2. About nine out of ten of these young people live in less developed countries, where they are more likely to face poverty and lack access to health care and education;
  3. Half of these young people face alarming vulnerabilities because they are girls. Half of all sexual assaults are committed against girls aged 15 or younger and many of these crimes would not be punished, which severely abuses human rights;
  4. In developing countries, one in every three girls is married before reaching age 18. These girls often face a cascade of other human rights abuses such as sexual violence and are often kept away from school;
  5. Child marriage is often followed by pregnancy, even if a girl is not yet physically or mentally ready;
  6. Solution to ending these human rights abuses is to empower girls. With investments and programs targeting adolescent girls, they will be able to receive education and health care. Illegal early marriages and employments will also be avoided. As a result, they can use their knowledge and skills to fight for their rights and live prosperous, meaningful lives.

The Bassiouni Group (TBG) recognizes the importance these young girls will play in the development of their countries and communities. TBG is currently working on an ongoing project with UNICEF in Uganda to address the underlying structural causes that contribute to the non-realization of children’s rights for young girls at both the community and family level. The project entails high-level TBG experts to provide technical, strategic and facilitative support to enable the development of a costed Multi Sectoral National Strategic Framework for Adolescent Girls that will strengthen collaboration and coordination as well as harmonize interventions for these young adults. This is a timely project given the national policy shift in embracing adolescents in the country’s economic, political and social institutions as a catalyst for development.

Additionally this year, the first Youth Forum at the UN Commission on the Status of Women developed the first-ever “Youth-Agreed Conclusions” for the implementation of the 2030 Agenda, drawing attention to the specific needs and potential of young women and girls. If investment in teenage girls could have priority everywhere, we could expect a world of equality: a Planet 50-50 by 2030.

For more Information:

2016 Theme: Investing in teenage girls

World Population Day in Six Eye-Popping Charts

World Population Day: Invest in Teenage Girls

Women and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

Youth leaders call for “big leap” for gender equality at first CSW Youth Forum


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