To celebrate International Day of the Girl, Daraja Academy students assembled in the patio outside of the dining hall on campus. Students talk about the power of girls and women frequently, so the International Day of the Girl celebration was unique to the holiday. As a partner of Nike’s Girl Effect, Daraja girls were excited to read and discuss the Girl Effects newest project- The Girl Declaration.
The Girl Declaration is a statement written by 508 girls living in poverty around the world with the expertise of more than 25 leading development organizations, declaring the power and strength of girls, in order to be included in the world’s next development agenda. The Millennium Development Goals, which were established following the Millennium Summit at the United Nations in 2000 and expire in 2015, fell short in prioritizing girls, and this declaration was written to ensure that would not happen again.
So on Friday, Daraja students broke into small groups and read the declaration aloud. They talked about what they thought about the declaration, and what it means to them. Girls shared with the entire group what they learned from the declaration, and inspiration that they took from it.
In discussion, Jecinta, a first year Daraja student explained, “The Girl Declaration has made a huge impact on me. I know my potential, I am so proud to be a girl.”
Her classmates agreed.
“I have a voice, and I will use it,” asserted Bilha, a second year student.
“I would add,” advised third year Irene, “This is the moment whereby rising up does not scare me.” The other Daraja girls at her table nodded in response.
Following the discussion, Daraja students were ready to show their support to the declaration by signing it. Few by few, they came up to the front of the room and signed a poster with the declaration on it with excited squeals, happily stating their solidarity with the goals of the declaration.
To read the declaration and watch Daraja students signing it, watch this short video: