“The moment I wake up
Before I put on my makeup
I say a little prayer for you
And while I’m combing my hair now
And wondering what dress to wear now
I say a little prayer for you”
These lyrics from The Queen, Aretha Franklin, show the kindness of a young girl who has the freedom to choose the love of another. Girls across the world are naturally nurturing and brilliant, but that doesn’t mean they get to choose their destinies for love or otherwise.
By the billions, girls under 18 are not allowed to go to school, barred from the workforce, restricted by wage gaps, forced into trafficking and child-marriages, experience domestic violence and even genital mutilation. If the way women are treated is any indication of the future, then our girls, especially Black and brown girls across the world, could use more than a little prayer. They need action.
The International Day of the Girl was established to bring infantries and ammunition to front-line battles that over a billion girls across the globe face every day. Since the initiative began in 2012 by the United Nations, October 11 is dedicated to action, advocacy and dialogue with global impact.
Organizations around the world are speaking up with them to make a change. These girls are more than their struggle and, despite the status quo, are fighting to recapture a carefree and safe girlhood.
As we engage in conversations on #DayoftheGirl, let’s remember to stand with and encourage the girls in our own lives so they are able to take charge of their own futures.