Girls Takeover

Girls are powerful. They have the right to equal power, equal freedom, and equal representation.

Girls around the world are taking the lead, challenging norms, and advocating for change during Girls Takeover events.

Girls in Nepal are rising to the occasion, ready to challenge stereotypes and storm the norms. On International Day of the Girl, celebrated every year on the 11th of October, Plan International Nepal is set to empower girls and young women through its Girls Takeover programme.

Girls in Nepal, like their counterparts around the world, possess equal power, freedom, and the drive to realise their ideas and aspirations. They are inventors and creators, unafraid to call out harmful gender stereotypes that persist in society.

The Girls Takeover programme, initiated by Plan International, serves as a beacon of hope and empowerment. It encourages girls and young women to step into leadership positions across various domains, including business, politics, and media. Their mission is to champion gender equality, equal representation, and the untapped potential of girls.

It’s high time that girls find themselves at the forefront of decision-making tables, contributing to the creation of a more equal and just world.

Girls taking over the radio station during Girls Takeover 2018.

Radio takeover

In 2018, Neetika, a 17-year-old from western Nepal, took over her community radio station on International Day of the Girl to empower girls and address critical issues, sparking a nationwide movement as 900 girls across Nepal voiced their concerns and called for change.

“The takeover boosted my confidence, allowed me to engage in discussions with high-profile figures on girls’ issues, and showed me the power of girls’ involvement in amplifying their ideas.”


Breaking barriers through the power of youth engagement

A takeover isn’t just a symbolic gesture; it’s a fun and exciting youth engagement and influencing tool. During this initiative, a girl or young woman is provided with support and guidance to assume leadership roles in political, economic, or social spaces, all aligned with the global Girls Get Equal campaign theme for International Day of the Girl.

Rajyalaxmi sitting at her desk during the Girls Takeover event.

Girls Takeover local government

In 2021 International Day of the Girl, Rajyalaxmi, 22, assumed the role of Sinja Rural Municipality’s chairperson, advocating for girls’ freedom from online violence, part of a larger movement involving 62 girls in Nepal securing commitments for a safer online environment.

Nepal’s unique challenges

While celebrating the strength and determination of girls in Nepal, it’s essential to address the challenges they face:

  • Child marriage rates: Nepal has the third-highest rate of child marriage in South Asia with 37% of Nepali women married by the age of 18, and 10% married before they even reach 15.
  • Education: in Nepal, while 82% of children complete lower basic schooling, only 75% finish upper basic school. The numbers drop significantly when it comes to secondary school, with just 27% of children completing this level. By secondary school-age, 15% of children are out of school.
  • Gender disparity in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM): women currently make up only 34% of the workforce in STEM fields in Nepal.
Shreesti and Finland's ambassador to Nepal sit next to each other smiling.

Girls Takeover Finnish Embassy

In a #GirlsTakeover for the 16 Days of Activism, 16-year-old Shreesti from Bardiya stepped into the role of Finland’s Ambassador to Nepal, advocating against child marriage and promoting girls participation in decision-making, supported by Plan International’s sponsorship programme.

“We need to increase the full, meaningful, and equal participation of women and girls in decision-making. Women and girls are agents of change.”

H.E. Riina-Riikka Heikka,
the Ambassador of Finland

Time for change and empowerment

The gender disparities in child marriage rates, education, employment, health, and STEM participation call for immediate action. It’s time to break down the barriers that hold girls and women back from pursuing certain careers and reaching leadership positions.

This International Day of the Girl, Plan International Nepal is committed to supporting girls as they take center stage. They will be taking over boardrooms, seats of power, channels of influence, and the very stereotypes that have hindered their progress and aspirations for far too long.

In a world that is striving for progress and equality, the power of girls in Nepal and around the globe cannot be ignored. Together, we can build a more equitable and inclusive future where every girls potential is realised to its fullest extent. Plan International Nepal’s Girls Takeover programme is an example of hope, guiding the way towards a brighter tomorrow.

Nirjala and Moushumi Shrestha, the Honorary Consulate General of Sweden posing together.

Girls Takeover Sweden Consulate

On the International Day of the Girl in Nepal, 16-year-old Nirjala from Makwanpur took over the role of Honorary Consulate General of Sweden in Kathmandu, promoting girls leadership potential and gender issues in a productive exchange with Moushumi Shrestha, the Honorary Consulate General, and Swedish embassy alumni.

“Girls, don’t underestimate yourself you are the mother of creation, you have a big role to play in the implementation therefore confidently step forward for #GirlsTakeover.”

H.E. Moushumi Shrestha,
the Honorary Consulate General of Sweden