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City of Banjul
Wednesday, September 23, 2020

Girls’ Agenda raises awareness of students on women’s sexual, reproductive rights

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The event was held recently at the school grounds under the theme ‘Make it Happen for Sexual and Reproductive Health Rights of Girls and Women.’ 

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In a remark, Matida Daffeh, the country coordinator the Girls’ Agenda said her organisation seeks to help young girls who are confronted with challenges in our neighbourhoods, households and communities.  She noted that the plight of some of our young girls requires immediate attention.

“Let’s try to put ourselves together, come together to form an organisation where we will try to reach out to girls, women and even men to share with them to enlighten them so that they become aware of some of the issues that we are confronted with,” she said. 

Every year on March 8, women all over the globe come together to celebrate their achievements and share their challenges and barriers that retard them from achieving their full potential. The first International Women’s Day was celebrated in 1976 just after the first international conference was held for women in Mexico City. After that conference, the world became more conscious of the plight of women in the world.” 

According to her, there was a global outcry for the recognition of the efforts and roles played by women in the political and socio-economic development of their nations and the world at large. She noted that despite all the contributions of women in household, community and national levels, their efforts are undervalued. 

She added: “We all know that there is no house for instance in The Gambia where you don’t really recognise the contribution of women or a woman. But women are treated as inferior to their male counterparts and they are labelled as the weaker sex, yet the world cannot go on without the woman.”

On her part, Oumie Sissoho, the programme manager of Girls’ Agenda, said that the association is about moving the agenda of women and girls forward and as well address issues that affect them in our society. “We understand that teenage pregnancy is one of the issues that are actually affecting the well being of our girls in this country,” she said. “According to the World Health Organisation about 15 million girls aged fifteen to nineteen and some one million girls under the age of fifteen give birth every year mostly in lower and middle income countries. It is important to note that all teenage pregnancies do not take place outside of wedlock and are not referred as sexual violence.” 

According to her, more than 30 percent of girls in lower and middle income countries marry before they are eighteen years and around 14 percent before they reach fifteen years.

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