Today, a day before the Global Citizen Festival in Central Park, New York City, the Action Summit took place, giving global citizens the possibility to engage in conversations around some of the most important development priorities: sanitation, education, global health and women and girls.
I had the great opportunity to speak about why the rights of women and girls must be fulfilled in order to reach any other development goals and end extreme poverty.
For those of you who who may not know, I am pregnant. I was born in a country where there is access to good quality healthcare. Because of this fact, I have not had to worry about the baby growing inside of my belly or risk dying during childbirth. Yet during the past hour almost 35 women and girls have died due to complications during pregnancy and childbirth – that’s 300 000 a year! Did you know that the most common cause of death for teenage girls in the least developed countries is just that – complications during pregnancy and childbirth?
1 in 3 girls in low and middle income countries is married before her 18th birthday. Early, forced and child marriage is a human rights violation that leaves girls at greater risk of violence and poverty.
In South Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa, girls are married before age 18 at an alarming 50% and 40% respectively. In Sub-Saharan Africa, where 90% of adolescent pregnancies occur IN marriage, it is safe to assume that not all those sexual acts were consensual and not all those pregnancies were planned. Not having sexual and reproductive health is a massive human rights violation and it must end now. #childmarriage #MDGMomentum #mdg456live #humanrights #girls #srhr
According to WHO, violence against women and girls is a public health problem of epidemic proportions, and it is estimated that 1 in 3 women will be subjected to gender-based violence and abuse during her lifetime.
We can not fully address any development priorities without ensuring that the rights of women and girls are fulfilled.
We can’t end poverty without ensuring that every girl that is born into this world is free – free to learn, free to play, free to decide over her own body and free to live her life to her full potential.
The Global Poverty Project and Global Citizen have sparked action to be taken to ensure girls and women stop being left behind. This is what Girls’ Globe is all about – we are raising the voices of young women and grassroots voices for global leaders to hear them.
As part of our campaigning for women and girls we are delighted to join Global Poverty Project and their recently launched global campaign with the United Nations Population Fund called #ShowYourSelfie.
We’re mobilizing people around the world to show their support for the rights of adolescents and youth to be central in the post-2015 development agenda.
Today, the day before the #GlobalCitizenFestival, @glblctzn and @thegpp held the #ActionSummit to have an in-depth conversation on the most important issues on the development agenda. We joined in to ask people to stand with the 1.8 billion youth, who need to have their voices heard in the post-2015 development agenda. Join us in this visual petition and #ShowYourSelfie for youth!
What could be more important than empowering one quarter of the world’s population?
Adolescents and youth are 1.8 billion strong. There are more young people in the world today than ever before. They are a powerful force, individually and collectively. They are world leaders today and are building the foundation for the world’s future.
Millions of young people do not have access to basic needs and rights. Needs such as education, health services, access to contraception, comprehensive sexuality education, fair wages and protection from violence.
As global leaders set the new Sustainable Development Goals during the coming year, young people MUST be at the table, their voices need to be heard.
So join us in this call to action! #ShowYourSelfie for youth, and raise your voice to ensure that women and girls are included in all aspects of the post-2015 development agenda.
The time really is now. We want strong commitments and we want action.