On this International Day of the Girl we celebrate women and girls all over the world and work towards how we as women can set a better example of leadership.
Friday was International Day of the Girl Child, established in 2012 to honor and observe the rights of girls everywhere, who represent the hope and future of their families, communities and nations, yet face countless rights violations such as violence and harassment, female genital mutilation and child marriage, which claims 15 million girls each year in the developing world.
Prostitution, one of the most brutal forms of male-perpetrated sexual abuse, is illegal in South Africa. While corrupt police are known to arrest and brutalize the women for loitering, buyers of sexual acts are rarely arrested.
There's no better time to raise our voices for the rights of women and girls in the United States than now. That is why we are elated to join thousands of other women and girls' advocates at the historic United State of Women Summit on June 14.
Our culture's current lack of understanding of women as full human beings must evolve into a conviction that indivisible rights include freedom from unfettered male sexual access, from female genital mutilation to child marriage; from reproductive health to sexual violence; from sexual harassment to prostitution. Achieving equality depends on it.