Nagaland observes International Day of Girl Child
Dimapur/Kohima, Oct. 11 (EMN): Various activities marked the week-long International Day of Girl Child, which was observed in different districts of Nagaland. The week-long celebration, which was observed on the theme “My voice, our equal future” was observed from October 7 to the 11th.
Commemorating the International Day of the Girl Child, Phek district administration and the district level centre for women (DLCW)- Mahila Shakti Kendra (MSK) under Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao (BBBP) organised a programme at Phek district headquarters on October 11.
Marking the event, a BBBP magazine titled ‘The Lens’ and a music video “Oh hi hey” (Nagas united for women empowerment) was released by the Phek deputy commissioner (DC), Sachin Jaiswal.
Celebrating the achievements of Jessica Snock, who hails from Reguri village under Meluri sub-division in Phek district, the district task force on Beti Bachao Beti Padhao declared her as the “Phek district icon” on the occasion.
An update from MSK stated that a baby gift hamper consisting of baby kit, baby blanket and certificate were presented to the newborn baby girls in celebration of girl child at District Hospital Phek. It added that baby gift hampers would also be distributed in all the primary health centres (PHC) and community health centres (CHC) under Phek district.
It also informed that on October 10, the district administration and DLCW- Mahila Shakti Kendra, Phek, conducted an awareness campaign on menstrual health and hygiene under BBBP with the women and adolescent girls in six villages under Phek district.
In a related programme, Longleng district observed the International Day of the Girl Child from October 7 to the 11th organised by the district administration, in collaboration with the Mahila Shakti Kendra under BBBP.
The culmination programme was organised on October 11 at the DC’s conference hall.
Speaking at the event, the deputy commissioner of Longleng M Shayung Phom encouraged the gathering to give importance on quality education to both male and female child without any discrimination. Citing an example from his own family, the DC stated that female children were included in taking major decisions, which eventually brought about huge changes and success in the family.
Also speaking on the occasion, Trongdiba Tongpi T Sangtam, SDO Longleng, has committed to sponsor a girl child’s education including school and tuition fees. He encouraged the participants to always respect women and girls in every aspect of their life.
He stated that, given the opportunity, a girl child could bring about great changes in the society in particular and nation at large.
Ruokuosetuo Tetsoe, EAC HQ Longleng, spoke on the importance and significance of the day.
The highlight of the event included a song presentation by a female band “Soul Sisters” called “Spread your wings.” Winners of super girl costume competition were also announced at the event in which Shamthung Phom of PPC ward won the first position, while Yingli Phom of Shuli ward won the second position and Mungli Phom of Nyenching won the third place.
The winners were awarded with certificates and cash prizes.
The week-long programme was also marked with pink painting of street walls, super girl costume competition, formation of BBBP volunteers, and social work.
To promote the BBBP scheme widely, ten girls each from every ward of Longleng town have been selected as volunteers. They would assist in all the activities under scheme in the district.
In Wokha district, the International Day of the Girl Child Day was observed by felicitating girl child and women achievers and the Wokha district local champion of BBBP. The programme was initiated by the Wokha district administration and the district level centre for women –Mahila Shakti Kendra (DCLW-MSK).
Speaking on the theme, the advisor of Horticulture and Border Affairs, Mhathung Yanthan, stated that it spoke volume of the further desire and inspiration of more than 1.1 billion young girls across the globe under the age of 18 years in asserting their rights as change makers.
In his greeting, he appreciated the district administration and DLCW-MSK for coming up with many innovative ideas in implementing BBBP scheme especially in creating awareness on social issues, education, health and skill development. He further emphasised on the needs to educate the girl child in environmental conservation and take up measures in mitigating and adapting to climate change.
Lobeno Tungoe, 2nd runners-up of singing competition organised under BBBP, enthralled the audience with her original song “Strength of a woman”.
The chairperson of the programme Arhonbeni Ezung, EAC , led the participants in administering the pledge to ‘Save, support and educate the girl child.’
Achievers in various fields were also felicitated on the occasion.
The chief guest and additional deputy commission (ADC), Wokha, Mathung K Tsanglao, underlined that gender equality must start from one’s own home. Claiming that there is no such thing as male work or female work, Tsanglao stressed that ‘all works are same as everyone eats the same food and thus every work must be done by everyone regardless of gender.’
He also emphasised that parents must inculcate the concept right from the beginning in order to stop the chain of gender stereotype. He said there is a ‘need to up bring the child with a thought that boys and girls are the same for the generation to progress towards positive development.’
“Gender equality is a human right, so not allowing females to work outside or not giving the opportunity to vote or the rights to own property is wrong. Male must listen and respect the opinion of females in every decision that involves her or her family,” Tsanglao maintained and insisted that educating girl children is a must.
He encouraged everyone present to be the channel of change and spread the message of importance of girl education. He also pointed out that girls are a victim of double discrimination because being under age “they cannot voice out when injustice is meted out to them and also because just being a girl itself their views and opinion are not taken seriously by the society.”
In this regard, he encouraged the girls to stand and speak for their own rights saying, “they will not be heard as long as they do not stand or speak out.”
On the issue of family planning, he has stressed on the importance of taking into consideration the financial status of a family while planning for the number of children. He stated that an unplanned family could have adverse repercussions both on the parents and the child.
He concluded his speech with a word of encouragement to support the education of girl children and promote the cause of gender issues.
In yet another programme, Team ARC (Ahthibung Region Club) took the opportunity of “sharing is best caring” by assisting underprivileged students with their fees, books and uniform for the current academic year to mark the International Day of Girl Child.
An update from ARC stated that it had initiated similar programmes in the past as part of giving back to society. As the current pandemic has greatly impacted the economy, the organisation stated that parents were found wanting in sending their children in schools or buying smart devices for online classes.
ARC team expressed delight that they could atleast lent help to someone in taking a small step towards their career.