UNICEF Says Adolescent Girls at High Risk of Sexual Violence





The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), says adolescent girls in developing countries continued to face risk of sexual violence.

UNICEF’s Bauchi Field officer, Tushar Rane, said this at a media dialogue to commemorate the 2024 International Women’s Day on Wednesday in Gombe.

The theme of the Day is: “Invest in Women, She is the solution.”

Rane said, one in seven girls in developing countries is married before reaching the age of 15.

He also said that investment in health, rights and wellbeing of adolescent girls generates a transformative ripple effect to uplift entire nations.

“Nearly half of adolescent girls in UNICEF programme countries suffer from anaemia and lack of access to essential health and nutrition services in the event of pregnancy,” he said.

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According to him, if the trend persists, the number of girls and women living in extreme poverty in sub-Saharan Africa, is projected to increase by 2030.

The UNICEF Chief explained that providing adolescent girls with the necessary support, access and opportunities to realise their potentials would enable them to become formidable agents of change.

He said, “Empowered girls can play a crucial role in tackling some of the most pressing global challenges such as climate change, poverty and conflict.

“Their contributions pave the way for inclusive and sustainable development, shaping a brighter future for generations to come.

“The investment in women through the (Mama2Mama Initiative), including strengthening women’s knowledge of community health systems has contributed to positive health outcomes in UNICEF’s intervention states.”

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He called on all and sundry to push for a world characterised by equity and inclusivity where girls and boys were empowered to access and benefit from the same rights, opportunities and protections, fostering a society where every person could thrive.

The International Women’s Day (IWD) is a global day celebrated annually on 8 March, as a focal point in the women’s rights movement.

It focused to issues such as gender equality, reproductive rights, violence and abuse against women.


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