TORONTO, March 8, 2012 /CNW/ - Today, the Honourable Rona Ambrose, Minister of Public Works and Government Services and Minister for Status of Women announced that Canada will celebrate the first International Day of the Girl on October 11, 2012 following its recent designation by the United Nations. Minister Ambrose was joined in this announcement by Dr. Chris Spence of the Toronto and District School Board, and Rosemary McCarney of Plan Canada along with 400 girls from local schools.
"On the Day of the Girl in Canada, we will invite all Canadians to celebrate girls as important agents of change within their families and their communities. It will also focus on ways to empower girls to reach their full potential and realize their dreams," said Minister Ambrose. "I believe the earlier in life girls understand that girls' rights are human rights, the stronger they become and the brighter their future will be."
"After a passionate effort inspired by girls around the world, we now have a day to celebrate their potential," said Rosemary McCarney, President and CEO of Plan Canada. "Girls face unique challenges and barriers in many parts of the world simply because they are young and female and this new day is one way to address those challenges, affirm girls' rights, and ensure they get the investment they deserve as critical agents of social change in their own lives and across entire nations."
"Our job as educators is to celebrate and inspire today's girls and young women, and in schools we have worked to create opportunities to help engage and support them to be tomorrow's leaders," said Dr. Chris Spence, Director of Education for the Toronto District School Board. "We are committed to doing everything we can so today's girls can fulfill the promise that the International Day of the Girl holds for every single one of them."
The Toronto and District School Board's Young Women on the Move event brings together more than 400 girls in Grades 3 to 6 to inspire, motivate, and educate. At the event, girls will discuss bullying and harassment, assertiveness, positive communication, body image and self-esteem as well as talk about women who are positive mentors in their lives. As part of the Because I am a Girl initiative, Plan Canada is facilitating a session that will help girls explore what it means to be a girl here, and around the world.
On March 24, 2011, the House of Commons gave its unanimous support to Canada leading a campaign at the United Nations for designating an International Day of the Girl. Minister Ambrose travelled to New York last fall to campaign for this initiative. The resolution designating the International Day of the Girl was formally adopted by the UN General Assembly on December 19, 2011.
For further information:
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Minister for Status of Women
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Status of Women Canada
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