Tomorrow is the International Day of the Girl, running under the theme "Innovating for Girls Education". This is the second ever commemoration of the International Day of the Girl after last year's commemoration which focused on ending child marriage.

Recognizing the need for fresh and creative perspectives to propel girls’ education forward, the 2013 International Day of the Girl Child will address the importance of new technology, but also innovation in partnerships, policies, resource utilization, community mobilization, and most of all, the engagement of young people themselves.

All UN agencies, Member States, civil society organizations, and private sector actors have potential tools to innovate for and with girls to advance their education. Examples of possible steps include:

  • Improved public and private means of transportation for girls to get to school—from roads, buses, mopeds, bicycles to boats and canoes;
  • Collaboration between school systems and the banking industry to facilitate secure and convenient pay delivery to female teachers and scholarship delivery to girls;
  • Provision of science and technology courses targeted at girls in schools, universities and vocational education programs;
  • Corporate mentorship programs to help girls acquire critical work and leadership skills and facilitate their transition from school to work;
  • Revisions of school curricula to integrate positive messages on gender norms related to violence, child marriage, sexual and reproductive health, and male and female family roles;
  • Deploying mobile technology for teaching and learning to reach girls, especially in remote areas.

This day is a call to young people to come up with new ideas to address the educational challenges facing girls today. Youth must rise to remove barriers to girls education which include harmful cultural practices like child marriage and gender inequalities fueling boy-child preference and exclusion of girls. New approaches must be adopted to increase funds to enable girls education, including through the availing of scholarships and bursaries for underprivileged children.

The Bulawayo Youth Development Organization recently launched a scholarship fund for young leaders which will benefit young women and men in the city of Bulawayo and the country as a whole. 60% of the scholarships will go toward female youth leaders, in a move aimed at support a culture of active citizenry in young women and men in their communities.

Join us as we raise funds for the program by liking our Facebook Page and joining activities we'll post on the platform.

PicturePicture courtesy of Radio Dialogue
Bulawayo has a new Mayor. Ward 3 Councillor Martin Moyo (left) has been elected as the new Mayor of the City of  Bulawayo with Gift Banda (right) elected as his deputy. The pair will lead the new team of 29 councilors which was sworn in last week in the council chambers.

His election put an end to the speculation and on-going conflict between the Ministry of Local Government and the MDC-T over the leadership of the council with the MDC-T opting for the appointment of a non-councillor, Mandla Nyathi and the Ministry insisting on the election of a Councillor for the Mayoral position.

The new council and its leadership has an uphill task as the city battles to provide water and satisfactory services to its residents. The council also faces a demanding youth population that seeks recreational facilities, health services, job opportunities and skills training amongst many needs.

We wait to see what will come of this new arrangement, and whether or not it will do justice to the electorate. Maybe this is the team that will restore the city to its legendary status as a 'City of Kings and Queens' or we are set for a downfall to insecurity, mismanagement and multi-level poverty. Time will tell...

Find out more about the election here