Hacey seeks continuous investment, protection of girl child
A non-governmental organisation, Hacey Health Initiative, has called for increased empowerment and protection of the girl child in areas of healthcare, education and political participation.
The call was made at an event to mark the International Day of the Girl Child, which had secondary schools female students in attendance.
According to the Executive Director, Rhoda Robinson, girls mainly face the challenge of inequality, adding that it cuts across a girl’s right to access basic support such as protection from violence and harm and the right to live free from fear.
“These challenges affect a girl’s ability to grow and become effective contributors, participators and decision makers in the society. There are structural barriers that prevent girls from being decision makers within even the family space and communities. All these factors contribute to limiting a girl’s potential to live how she wants and be a positive influence for herself and family,” Robinson said.
Speaking on the role of Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) in the development of the girl child, Robinson added: “SDGs are geared towards ensuring that no one is left behind and discriminated against so that everyone can benefit from development. Goal five, which is on gender equality, speaks directly to the challenges girls face when it comes to gender and sexual violence, harmful traditional practices and the girl’s ability to participate in the society.”
She stated that the initiative was focused on building capacity of girls across communities, so that they would be able to empower other girls around them.
“We can ensure that when girls of today become women in the future they are able to claim their rights, be decision makers and reach their full potential.”
She added that Hacey organises a yearly essay competition where secondary school girls are allowed to share their ideas on what could be done better for girls.
Programme Manager, Hacey, Chioma Osakwe, noted that aside from the conference, the initiative, in partnership with Access Bank, would embark on health and leadership education across schools in 10 states of the federation.