23 October 2015
Plan International Ethiopia colorfully celebrated the 2015 ‘International Day of a Girl Child’ for the 4th time at Assella town, Oromia Regional State
Following the declaration of the United Nations, Plan International Ethiopia colorfully celebrated the 2015 ‘International Day of a Girl Child’ for the 4th time at Assella town, Oromia Regional State on Friday October 16, 2015.
The event which was well organized in close partnership with Arsi Zone Women and Children Affairs office has the objectives of brining the year’s theme “I’m a girl Child don’t make me a Child Mother!” to the real situation of girls in Arsi Zone. It also created a forum whereby strategies on how to empower girls as well as enhancing the participation of children, particularly girls help them claim their needs and welfares for future development.
The program began with children’s demonstration around the main street of the town with different slogans related to child marriage. Following the demonstration; elders of the town, opened the symposium held at Arsi Zone Administration hall with traditional blessings.
Wubalem Tilahun, Deputy Head of Arsi Zone Women & Children Affairs Office officially welcomed the participants, while, Beshir Edao, Arsi zone administration office representative delivered an official opening speech.
Edom Fikru, Plan International Ethiopia, Communication & Marketing Manager on her part addressed the participants on Plan International Ethiopia’s vision, mission and programs that have been delivered so far at a country level as well as in different program areas.
In her speech, Edom stressed that the need for a joint effort by both the government and the International organizations like Plan International Ethiopia, for the protection of children especially girls from early marriage and gender based violence. To this end, she expressed Plan International Ethiopia’s commitment to address and aggressively work on girls issue under its Because I am a Girl Campaign.
To commemorate the day which is the first of its kind in Arsi zone, different sector offices representatives along with Plan International Ethiopia representative conducted candle lighting process.
As part of the symposium, studies on the ‘Causes and Impacts of Child Marriage on Girls Education in Arsi Zone’ as well as ‘how to Empower Girl Children’ have been presented by Senior Experts from Arsi Zone Education office and Arsi University Gender Department respectively.
Panel discussion, by Panelists from different sectors of Arsi zone on major identified challenges of the zonal adolescent girls and on how to empower them to protect themselves from various forms of violence has been convoyed.
Meanwhile; brief description and awareness creation on Plan International Ethiopia’s, ‘Because I am a Girl’ Campaign has been made and presented by Yilma Abebe, Plan International Ethiopia, Campaigns Coordinator.
In his brief presentation Yilma, highlighted the essence of the ‘Because I am a Girl’ campaign, its objectives, strategies, target groups as well as what needs to be done for future to capacitate stakeholders in general and girl children in particular apart from the rationale behind BIAAG.
During the celebration of the event, children staged a drama on child marriage, sexual and physical abuses, musical show, Pictorial as well as Poem competitions among students were taken place.
Furthermore, an exemplary self-expression of a model woman, who gave a practical lesson on the impact of abduction and early marriage on her life & education, has been demonstrated to the participants.
More than 300 children, composed of six primary school from the town and the surrounding districts, zonal and district level government official, community representatives as well as key stakeholders attended the program.
Produced by: Girma Eshetu