International Day of the Girl Child Observed

Islamabad: 11 October 2013- The United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) together with UNICEF, observed the International Day of the Girl Child at Islamabad today.

Baligh Ur Rehman, the Chief Guest and State Minister for Education, Trainings and Standards in Higher Education, formally inaugurated the Education Expo, “Innovating for Girls' Education” as part of celebrations for the International Day of the Girl Child 2013.

Representatives and officials of the government, UNICEF, UNESCO, representatives of the civil society organizations, media and students of the various educational institutes including students of the Islamabad College for Girls attended the expo.

The Chief Guest while addressing the expo extend his gratitude to UNESCO and UNICEF for organizing the event and said that Pakistan is lag behind in the education sector and that his government is committed to work hard to improve the education statistics and GDP up to 4 % in the coming future added further that “offering education to girls is the shortest way to empower them”. He paid tribute and good wishes to the Pakistani daughter, Malala Yousafzai for the upcoming selection for the Noble Peace Prize.

Country Director UNESCO, Kozeu Kay Nagata congratulates all the participants for Malala Yousafzai win of the European Union's Annual Human Rights Award and said that it is a moment of great pride for all Pakistanis, especially all girls of this country.

While remarking on the occasion, Dr. Kay Nagata said that UNESCO is committed to promoting girls education agenda in order to achieve the efforts towards EFA (Education for All) which will focus on addressing the importance of new technology and also innovation in partnerships, policies, resource utilization, community mobilization, and most of all -the engagement of young people themselves.

She also recalled that to advocate for every girls’ right to education, UNESCO and government of Pakistan hosted a high-level advocacy event at UNESCO HQs in Paris on 10th December 2012 aimed at mobilizing and bringing together various segments of the society to renew commitment and seek support for girls’ education globally. She appeals the government for an increase in the GDP for education.

UNICEF Representative and OIC, Miriam de Figueroa while speaking on the occasion said that this day will provide a platform to highlight examples around Pakistan of ongoing work and what has been achieved as well as to raise the importance of INNOVATION in advancing girls education in Pakistan.

The International Day of the Girl Child recognizes girl’s rights and the unique challenges girls face around the world. The United Nations adopted this day through Resolution 66/170 to declare 11 October as the International Day of the Girl Child.