The plight of young girls and women in India is hardly news to anyone. The abject poverty, lack of educational opportunities, forced child marriage and the absence of any medical or sanitary care are just some of the things that girls in India have to deal with every day.
Unimaginable numbers of teenage girls miss on average 5-7 days of school each month from the time they hit puberty and most of these eventually drop out simply because they do not have any sanitary products, or private hygienic places to change them during their period.
Today is National Day of the Girl Child and while it is definitely a positive sign to see a day dedicated to upliftment of the girl child in India, the day is also shadowed by a certain darkness. Why should we need a day dedicated to the girl child? Every day of every week of every month of every year should be a day of the girl child. They are the future and they deserve every opportunity to achieve their boundless potential.
Awareness, education and access to the things that so many of us take for granted, like sanitary pads or a clean bathroom with a door that closes are just some of the things that we can work to provide, making every day the day of the Girl Child in India.
The story of a girl in India may not have a happy ending just yet, but that doesn’t mean that we can’t rewrite this story together and make a difference!