Girls Speak Out

<br>Nitish Dev Bhattarai

Jan. 10, 2011, 5:45 p.m. Published in Magazine Issue: Vol.: 04 No .-14 Jan. 07-2011 (Poush 23,2067)

Beyond Beijing Committee brought 80 young girls from 27 districts of five development regions of Nepal to share their hardships and harassments at a workshop in Kathmandu organized from December 17 to December 20, 2010. The committee, with the support from Action Aid, Consortium, Himrights, Plan Nepal, UNICEF, UNFPA, DFID and World Vision, aimed at raising rights issues of girls who were married at early age, young mothers below fifteen, school dropouts, street girls and girls living in unacceptable circumstances. The objective of the workshop was to identify and prioritize their difficulties at present. The process was expected to help develop strategies and make their voices heard by policymakers.

Young girls shared their circumstances in which they faced sexual abuses, restrictions and discriminations. They demanded strong action from related institutions to end such evils in the future. Some female members of the Constituent Assembly attended the workshop on the third day to interact with the girls about their real circumstances and assured the young girls of support in the advocacy for rights of the girl children.

The workshop issued the Kathmandu declaration with the slogan “Hamro Kura, Garun Pura” (Fulfill our demands) on the last day. The declaration demanded effective response to the issues related with sexual abuse, slavery, early marriage, discrimination, child labor, lack of guardianship, conflict victims and different ability of the girl children.

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