Gender Equality

Gender Equality

Gender are all those characteristics that differentiate a boy from a girl. These are not only physical, but also social, like the fact that boys are expected to be cool and strong, while girls should be caring and quite.

Gender equality means that boys and girls have the same rights. There shouldn’t be a difference between what boys get to have or are allowed to do and what girls get or are allowed to do. Of course there are differences between boys and girls, but this does not mean that one gender is better than the other one.

  • Children’s rights: art 2 right to non-discrimination All children’s rights are for all children, it does not matter if you are a boy or a girl. It is not allowed to be discriminated based on your gender. You cannot be discriminated just because you are a girl. Art 2 UN CRC, the right to non-discrimination, makes sure of this.  
  • Sustainable Development Goals: SDG 5

Would you like to start a project for equality? Start your own new project, or download the step-by-step on how to organize sessions like Mercy!


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Gender Equality

What is the problem with gender equality?
In some cultures and/or religions boys are considered more important than girls. Because of this, boys are better cared for, while girls are being abused, exploited, or simply have fewer opportunities. Let’s look at a few facts about inequalities between boys and girls:   

  • Two thirds of all children who are not going to school are girls. Because of this, 75% of all adults who can’t read or write are women - In only 66% of all countries the same amount of boys and girls are going to school.
  • 1 in 5 women have experienced violence by their partner, and in 49 countries there are no laws protecting women against violence inflicted by their partner. 

The fact that boys are considered more important than girls can affect many areas of a child’s life: school, health, violence, child labor and child marriages. Since girls are considered less important, they often go to school less often and for fewer years. This means that they can’t get jobs as good as boys. Because in some cultures girls are considered less than boys, people find it okay for boys or men to beat them. Or because some people think that girls are less capable than boys, they have to get married as soon as possible, or otherwise put to work, so that their family don’t have to take care for them anymore.  

Why is gender equality important?
First of all it is important that everybody knows that boys and girls are equally good. It should not matter whether you are a boy or a girl, since you are entitled to the same opportunities and to the same rights. Equality is necessary for having access to every other children’s right, especially the right to education.   The fact that some girls are not given the opportunity to a full development is also a great waste of potential. Maybe, somewhere around the world, there is a girl who could have been an amazing doctor and could have developed a cure against a terrible disease, but instead is now at home doing domestic work.    

What can you do for gender equality? 

  • Look around you
    Are there things around you that boys are allowed to do and girls are not? Are boys favored over girls? Take action!  Make sure that both boys and girls can go to school. Talk to parents who don’t let their daughters go to school.   
  • Empower girls
    Girls are often raised with the idea that they are worth less than boys. Take time to tell them that they are just as good. Organize a fun night and inform them about their rights and opportunities.   
  • Change the rules
    Are there rules in your school, your community or in your country that are not equal for boys and girls? Organize a petition, tell people about these rules and make sure they sign your petition. Give the petition to the person that is responsible for these rules and let him or her know that you do not agree!