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GIRLS’ DAY: Stop Playing Second Fiddle, NGO Charges Female Adolescents

A cross-section of female students of Ikotun Junior High School listening to a sensitisation talk by the Executive Director, Family and Youth Support Initiative, Mrs Bukoladeremi Ladigbolu,  at the school premises, in Lagos, on Wednesday, to commemorate this year’s International Day of the Girl

A non-governmental organisation, Family and Youth Support Initiative (FYSI) has charged female adolescents to see themselves as natural leaders and stop playing second fiddle to their male counterparts.

This charge was handed down by the Executive Director of FYSI, Mrs. Bukoladeremi Ladigbolu, while addressing female students of Ikotun Junior High School, in Alimosho local government area of Lagos State, on Wednesday, during an interactive session to mark this year’s International Day of the Girl.

Ladigbolu noted that the United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund (UNICEF) deliberately chose the theme for this year’s celebration to serve as an encouragement for girls to take charge of their own future and also become leaders in all spheres of life.

She said, “As girls, you must always aim at surpassing boys in all activities. You have limitless potentials to be leaders. Girls are meant for the top. Leadership is not reserved for the males. So, be determined to compete with the boys for every position. It is not impossible for one of you here to become the first female president of Nigeria.

“That is why UNICEF chose the theme, ‘Invest in the Girl’s Rights: Our Leadership, Our Well-being,’ for this year’s celebration. The theme underscores the need for girls to take up more leadership roles in the society and it begins right from now that you’re in school.

“Another important point that has been said over and over is the need for girls to begin to dominate the field Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) and thereby position yourselves as change agents and decision-makers who will shape the future of the universe.”

She also echoed the call by UNICEF Nigeria for greater governmental and societal investments in platforms that enable female adolescents to express, learn, and thrive, while also guaranteeing them a more inclusive and equitable future.

“As stated by UNICEF Nigeria, government needs to pay more attention to girls’ education and also strengthen legislation that protect them from harmful cultural practices,” Ladigbolu added.

Gift items including sanitary pads, exercise books and pens were later given to the students.

L-R: Principal, Ikotun Junior High School, Mrs Oluyinka Ajagunna; Executive Director, Family and Youth Support Initiative (FYSI), Mrs Bukoladeremi Ladigbolu and the Vice Principal, Mrs Olajumoke Aboyade, during an interactive session for female students of the school by FYSI to commemorate this year’s International Day of the Girl, at the school premises in Lagos


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