Over 200 takeovers will take place in more than 50 countries to mark the International Day of the Girl. Leading figures in politics and business will be taken over by girls including the first female President of Nepal Bidhya Devi Bhandari.
By taking over positions where they are rarely seen, girls will call on governments to remove the barriers that deny millions their rights.
Girls excluded from power
Discrimination results in girls and women being excluded from key areas of power and influence. Only 10 out of 152 elected heads of state and 14 of 194 heads of government worldwide are women. In addition, fewer than 4% of CEOs leading the world’s 500 most prominent corporations are women.
The takeover is a statement of girls’ power and ability to change the world
“There is no country in the world where girls experience true gender equality. The takeover is a statement of girls’ power and ability to change the world. It also serves as a reminder to governments how millions of girls are denied an equal chance in life just because they are girls,” said Anne-Birgitte Albrectsen, CEO of Plan International.
Brisa, 17, is an indigenous Miskito girl from Nicaragua. She is among a group of girls who will take over the Spanish Parliament. She said: “I am very excited to be part of this moment in the movement for girls’ rights. I want to share the situation of girls in Nicaragua. I am proud to represent indigenous girls.”
Girls become leaders
Yohana Yembise, Indonesia’s Minister of Women Empowerment and Child Protection is handing over her office to girls for a day to support girls’ leadership. “I greatly support the Because I am a Girl movement as it prepares girls and young women to become future leaders,” said Ms Yembise.
Achieving gender equality is one of the Global Goals that were agreed by world leaders in 2015 which promise to transform the world by 2030. Without an urgent step-change by governments, this goal, alongside others, cannot be realised.