NRHJN advocates safe school environment for girls

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As the world commemorates the International Day of the Girl 2023, the Network of Reproductive Health Journalists of Nigeria (NRHJN) has called on authorities in Nigeria to ensure that the school environment is safe for the girl child.

This comes amidst continuous threats to girl-child education in the country as a result of harassment, kidnapping, bullying, and defilement.

In a statement jointly signed by the NRHJN Lagos State Coordinator, Kikelomo Oduyebo and its scribe, Yesirat Apakala, the group emphasised the rights of girls to a safe, uncompromised, and healthy life during their formative years and as they mature into womanhood.

“Girls have the potential to change the world as empowered women, workers, mothers, entrepreneurs, mentors, household heads, and political leaders, jus to mention a few,” the statement read in part.

The International Day of the Girl is marked every October 11 to raise awareness about gender inequality and to advocate for girls’ rights and empowerment while focusing on the essence of addressing the challenges girls and young women face and ensuring their rights as human are fulfilled.

The theme for the 2023 edition is “Invest in Girls’ Rights: Our Leadership, Our Well-being”.

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The NRHJN, as a group, sought to bridge the communication gaps in girls’ sexual and reproductive health and rights, while ensuring that girls reach their full potential even as they live healthy and fulfilling lives.

“We firmly believe that investment in realizing the power of adolescent girls upholds their rights and promises a more equitable and prosperous future. We call for full and unhindered achievement of gender equality and girl empowerment as integral to each of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) adopted in 2015 as the Agenda for Sustainable Development 2030,” the group added.

The group identified challenges to girl-child education such as female genital mutilation and forced child marriage and sought and end to these.

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