Oct 8, 20191 comment

In this ad hoc series of blogs, I offer some thoughts on the people, campaigns and sometimes poems that inspire me. This week – in honour of the International Day of the Girl Child coming up on Friday (11th October) – I’d like to share with you three campaigns or movements that you might want to consider supporting and some immediate thoughts on how to show your support.



OK, so UNICEF doesn’t work exclusively with girls but I have a soft spot for the organisation that gave me my first job after Parliament and crystallised my desire to change the world. So bear with me! The core areas of UNICEF’s work are:

  • Nutrition and life-saving food: 200 million children’s lives are currently at risk as a result of malnutrition and UNICEF provides 80% of the world’s life-saving food
  • Education: every day more than 61 million children do not attend primary school. In 2016 UNICEF supplied school books and other learning materials to 15.7 million children around the world.
  • Emergency relief: When war breaks out or disaster strikes, children lose their schools, their homes, their families and become more vulnerable to abuse and exploitation. In 2017 alone, UNICEF responded to 337 humanitarian emergencies in 102 countries.
  • Protection from climate change: Every year, environmental factors take the lives of 1.7 million children under five and by 2040, 600 million children (1 in 4) will be living in areas affected by severe drought.
  • Water, sanitation and hygiene: 5 billion people in the world lack safely managed sanitation and diseases resulting from poor water and sanitation kill 800 children every day. UNICEF is working with Governments in more than 113 countries to build water, sanitation and hygiene systems that are safe and will last.
  • Vaccines: Every day, 16,000 children under five die of diseases like measles, polio, tetanus, TB, diptheria and whooping cough as a result of having no access to basic vaccinations. these diseases. Unicef provides vaccines to immunise almost half of the world’s children against preventable diseases.

UNICEF is one of the only UN agencies that does not receive mandatory funding from the UN or member governments – and is therefore entirely reliant on voluntary donations from governments, organisations and individuals. As a result it is, in my opinion, one of the best and most efficiently run of the major UN agencies.

UNICEF is one of the only UN agencies that does not receive mandatory funding from the UN or member governments – and is therefore entirely reliant on voluntary donations from governments, organisations and individuals. As a result it is, in my opinion, one of the best and most efficiently run of the major UN agencies.

If you’d like to support their work with girls AND boys around the world, you can:

1. Make a donation: https://www.unicef.org.uk/donate/

2. Support the #Survivepast5 campaign and sign the UNICEF petition calling on Boris Johnson to fight for children: https://act.unicef.org.uk/page/45317/petition/1?ea.tracking.id=uuk-website&_ga=2.164602106.43404469.1570206456-1401690364.1570206456

3. Encourage your company to become a corporate partner: https://www.unicef.org.uk/corporate-partners/become-a-corporate-partner/


International Day of the Girl Child October 11th



SheDecides is a global movement campaigning for a new normal: a world in which every girl, every woman has the right to decide what to do with her body, without question. SheDecides was created as an urgent response to President Trump’s reinstatement and dramatic expansion of the Global Gag Rule in January 2017. The Global GAG rule prevents NGOs outside the US from receiving money from the US government if they provide safe abortions or even just simple information about abortion. The impact of this policy has had a devastating effect on women, girls and their communities around the world.

Outraged by one bad policy, Friends of SheDecides soon recognised that it is societal norms as well as bad laws and bad policies that have a detrimental impact on women and girls around the world. And so, as the movement has grown its focus has become to change social norms, laws and policies and unlock resources.

The SheDecides manifesto explains their stance so much more eloquently than I ever could, so here it is in full:

When She Decides, the world is better, stronger, safer.

She Decides whether, when, and with whom.

To have sex.

To fall in love.

To marry.

To have children.

She has the right.

To information, to health care, to choose.

She is free.

To feel pleasure.

To use contraception.

To access abortion safely.

To decide.

Free from pressure.

Free from harm.

Free from judgement and fear.

Because when others decide for her, she faces violence, forced marriage, oppression.

She faces risks to her health, to her dignity, to her dreams, to her life.

When she does not decide, she cannot create the life she deserves, the family she wants, a prosperous future to call her own.

We – and you, and he, and they – are uniting. Standing together with her so she can make the decisions only she should make.

Political leadership and social momentum are coming together like never before.

But we can go further, and we can do more.

From today, we fight against the fear.

We right the wrongs.

We mobilise political and financial support.

We work to make laws and policies just.

We stand up for what is right.

Together, we create the world that is better, stronger, safer.

But only if. And only when.

She Decides.

If you’d like to show your support for SheDecides then step one is to sign the manifesto here: https://www.shedecides.com/manifesto/


Girls not Brides 

Girls Not Brides is a global partnership of more than 1300 civil society organisations committed to ending child marriage and enabling girls to fulfil their potential. Every year, 12 million girls are married before the age of 18. That is 23 girls every minute.

  • Girls with no education are three times more likely to marry by 18 than those with a secondary or higher education.
  • Over 60% of women aged 20-24 with no education were married before they were 18.
  • Complications in pregnancy and childbirth are the leading cause of death in girls aged 15-19 globally.
  • Girls who marry before 15 are 50% more likely to face physical or sexual violence from a partner.

If you would like to help bring an end to child marriage. Here are three simple things you can do:

1. Sign this petition: https://secure.avaaz.org/en/community_petitions/World_Leaders_Stop_stealing_her_childhood_tell_world_leaders_to_protect_girls_from_child_marriage/details/

2. Share the facts:

On 11th October – or any other day for that matter! – copy, paste and share one of the following facts on your social media: 

Every year, 12 million girls are married before their 18th birthday. They all have a story to tell https://bit.ly/13FljsP

#Childmarriage threatens the health, education and rights of every girl. Ending #childmarriage will benefit us all https://bit.ly/14dPn0U

#DidyouKnow? Over 650 million women alive today were married before the age of 18. #Childmarriage must end NOW! https://bit.ly/16rvt47 

The bigger picture? A world without #childmarriage & where girls are empowered. How do we get there? Here’s how: https://bit.ly/1wY9w9qhttps://bit.ly/1wY9w9q

3. Support a project:

Go to Women’s WorldWideWeb and donate to one of the many projects listed there with a view to ending child marriage: https://www.w4.org/en/


There are hundreds of potential campaigns you could support, hundreds of ways in which to make your voice heard on the issues affecting girls (and women) around the world These are the three that I know most about but if none of these inspire you, I would urge you to do some research and find one campaign, one organisation or one charity that you can show your support for on International Day of the Girl Child.

We can all make a difference. We can all have an impact. We can all change the world.

So let’s do it. Let’s ACTUALLY make a difference!


Sara Price

Founder, Actually

October 2019

1 Comment

  1. Rosie



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