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IDGC: Empower the Girl Child, Educate a Nation

Deputy REO Ms Gugu Dlamin joined by students, Eric Rosenberg High Principal and NATICC PM in a group photo.

The International Day of the Girl Child (IDGC) is a day that aims to emphasize on the importance of the girl child’s existence. This is a day that is commemorated annually on the 11th October worldwide. Since 2011, the IDGC has been a global movement to recognize the rights of girls around the world and their unique challenges. Although a day may not be enough, these 24hrs are usually centered on highlighting the challenges faced by the girl child throughout their developmental stages from infancy, to childhood, to adolescence as well as adulthood. This day also aims to empower them. A daughter, a sister, a mother, all these titles refer to a human being that embodies beauty, strength and boldness. The theme for the year 2023 was “Invest in Girls’ Rights, Our Leadership, Our Well-being”. The theme highlights the significance of an investment in realizing the power of adolescent girls upholding their rights today and promises a more equitable and prosperous future. Girls’ rights need to be respected, especially the rights to education, protection from abuse and freedom of expression. Girls are like seeds; when nurtured with love and opportunity, they grow into mighty trees that provide shade for all.

Eric Rosenberg Primary student showing sanitary pads that she received from NATICC.

On the 6th December 2023, NATICC joined the rest of the world in the commemoration of the IDGC which was hosted at Eric Rosenberg High School. The event was inclusive of learners from both the High and Primary Schools. The Guest Speaker for the event was the Shiselweni Deputy Regional Education Officer, Ms Gugu Dlamini. “Young as you are, know that you are gold and the world is yours for the taking”, these were words of affirmation uttered by the guest speaker in a bid to empower all young people that took part in the event. She encouraged them to know their worth and know that they deserve all the best. She further encouraged the girls to value themselves, know who they are and their value will be seen in the ways that they carry themselves as young people. A total of 161 pupils, inclusive of boys (36) and girls (125) were empowered with gender-based violence (GBV) and teenage pregnancy (TP) prevention messages. The needs of adolescent girls were also paid attention to and the two schools were given a batch of sanitary towels that will benefit all the needy girls in the schools. The lack of sanitary towels normally affects the girl child’s education as some girls miss school during their menstrual cycle, particularly if they lack the sanitary pads. Hence NATICC saw it ideal to help girls stay in class by procuring a total of 140 packs of sanitary towels for the girl child. The head teachers from both schools appreciated NATICC for choosing their schools to commemorate such an important day as well as meeting the needs of the adolescent girls.

Deputy REO Ms Gugu Dlamini joined by a student as she make her remarks.

The learners also expressed a great deal of appreciation as some of them direly need the sanitary pads girls to value themselves, know who they are and their value will be seen in the ways that they carry themselves as young people. A total of 161 pupils, inclusive of boys (36) and girls (125) were empowered with gender-based violence (GBV) and teenage pregnancy (TP) prevention messages. The needs of adolescent girls were also paid attention to and the two schools were given a batch of sanitary towels that will benefit all the needy girls in the schools. The lack of sanitary towels normally affects the girl child’s education as some girls miss school during their menstrual cycle, particularly if they lack the sanitary pads. Hence NATICC saw it ideal to help girls stay in class by procuring a total of 140 packs of sanitary towels for the girl child. The head teachers from both schools appreciated NATICC for choosing their schools to commemorate such an important day as well as meeting the needs of the adolescent girls. The learners also expressed a great deal of appreciation as some of them direly need the sanitary pads as their guardians can barely afford to buy them. The overall event was a success as NATICC continues to build relationships with beneficiaries as well as restore their dignity.