Denmark: Crown Princess Mary attends virtual UN Girls’ Day celebration

Denmark: Crown Princess Mary attends virtual UN Girls’ Day celebration

NordenBladet – Crown Princess Mary participated in a virtual event to celebrate the United Nations’ Girls Day, joining a Danish women’s charity to discuss how COVID-19 has impacted girls’ rights in countries like Uganda and Ethiopia.

The Crown Princess was a guest of the PlanBørnefonden, a charitable organisation that works to support the world’s most “fragile and vulnerable areas to ensure the rights of children and young people and create equal opportunities for all, regardless of gender,” according to its website.

During the discussion, Crown Princess Mary spoke with 21-year-old Faridah from Uganda and 29-year-old Lidya from Ethiopia about their lives and how COVID-19 has impacted them.

“We know that when the crisis hits, the poorest and most vulnerable are hardest hit, and women and girls are unfortunately often in that group,” said Crown Princess Mary.

Faridah spoke of her focus on ensuring the right to education for young girls after she became pregnant at 14 and struggled to complete her education. She told Crown Princess Mary, “Right now, I am influencing the responsible leaders online and physically to ensure that they ensure that girls have access to education and that they improve the safety of girls. I try to change men’s attitudes and attitudes towards girls because they see us as sex objects. And I encourage the girls to be brave and fight against the injustices they encounter, and go to the police, so we break the circle of silence.”

Crown Princess Mary praised her efforts, saying: “You are such an inspiration, Faridah.”

Lidya spoke of how girls and women are experiencing violence and abuse as a result of the pandemic, telling Crown Princess: “When girls and women are assaulted, they are subsequently afraid of being blamed. Often, if girls are exposed to abuse, harassment or assault, people assume that the girls themselves are to blame.”

“We must first and foremost ensure that girls’ rights are respected and that they are given the opportunity to receive an education,” Crown Princess Mary said at the event, “that they are free from violence, can be healthy and have equal opportunities. They deserve the right to a future that everyone else [has].”

Featured image: Crown Princess Mary (UNRIC/CC/Flickr)

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