International Day of the Girl recognises the unique challenges that face girls globally and the enormous potential for change girls possess. The day was born from Plan International’s campaign to see girls on the global agenda and has been our biggest day of the year ever since.
Catcalling, leering, groping and abuse are threats girls face in cities all over the world. It doesn’t matter if you’re in Sydney or Kampala, street harassment is rife and the consequences run deep. When girls and women are made to feel afraid, to the point of avoiding public places, they are being denied the space and opportunity to work, study or play in their own cities.
Our research into girls’ experiences of the city was led by girls and used an innovative crowd-mapping approach to highlight stories at a global scale. Now the results are in, and they’re the wake-up call we need to put an end to street harassment everywhere.
As our cities’ populations grow, we are seeing an alarming rise in gender discrimination, sexual violence, harassment, insecurity and exploitation. This research aimed to find out what girls and young women actually experience as they move around their cities: how safe do they feel, how, where and when might the fear of violence and harassment impinge on their daily activities? What, when girls are restricted and intimidated, are the longer-term implications for their futures? Check out the report to find out what we learned.
“I’m tired, street harassment hurts me to the bone. Is it that perhaps they do not realise that their ‘compliments’ hurt? I am starting to be afraid to leave home.” GIRL, 16, LIMA
Our Safer Cities program is based on a simple, proven premise – that with a little support, girls can shape their environments for the better. With your donation we can work to make cities safer, so more girls have the freedom to pursue their education, their careers and their dreams.