10 challenges the girl child faces in Africa
The girl child faces many challenges in Africa. From families who see them as liabilities instead of assets to societies who don’t appreciate their talents and abilities because of their gender.
In many African societies, the girl child is seen as an object for sexual gratification. They are born, raised to be wives and given to men as old as their fathers because it is believed the girl child came to this world to procreate.
The focus of 2017 International Day of the Girl Child is unlocking the power of the adolescent girl.
Annually on October 11, International Day of the Girl Child also known as Day of the Girl is celebrated to highlight issues of gender inequality facing young girls all over the world. This year’s theme is “The Power of the Adolescent Girl: Vision for 2030.”
There are nearly 600 million girls aged 10 to 19 in the world today, each with limitless individual potential, however they are disappearing from public awareness and the international development agenda.
Between inequities in secondary education to protection issues, adolescent girls are uniquely impacted and should benefit from targeted investments and programs that address their distinct needs.
Investing in adolescent girls can have a formidable ripple effect to create a better world by 2030. On this International Day of the Girl, countries especially African countries should be at the fore front highlighting the unique challenges and potential of adolescent girls.
The focus on the girl child is not merely being politically correct. The girl child has become endangered in many African countries. They shouldn’t be subjected to suffering, abuse and deprivation.
Below are some issues the girl child faces in Africa today:
- The girl child faces discrimination in many African communities.
- The girl child is subjected to female genital mutilation to curb her sexual appetite.
- The girl is denied education because it is believed that her education ends in the kitchen
- The girl child is physically abused.
- The girl child is sexually assaulted.
- The girl child is deprived of economic empowerment.
- The girl child is becomes a child bride in many communities in Africa.
- The girl child is used as house helps and nannies for wealthy families.
- The girl child is victim of human trafficking rings across Africa.
- The girl child is exempted from inheriting properties.
African fathers and mothers should focus on empowering the girl child so that she can stand shoulder to shoulder with her counterparts in developed nations.
When we focus on educating and empowering the girl child, the world would be a better place for us all. Allow the girl child to be everything she is created to be. Don’t dim her light, focus on helping her achieve her innermost dreams.
Religious leaders shouldn’t only focus on building the girl child up spiritually, they should also focus on giving them quality education and social tools that will better their lives.