islamabad-The girls of Government Elementary School Kalyal Rawalpindi were invited at Roots Ivy/ DHA-1 to celebrate the UN International Day of the Girl Child 2016 with compassion, enthusiasm, pride and appreciation to acknowledge girls as population that face grave challenges, including gender inequality, child labor, early marriage, discrimination at home and to promote girl child rights.

They were greeted warmly and enthusiastically by the host students. Students joined hands to make this day extra special by conducting special activities including sports gala, heartrending speeches, national songs, fund raising, cake cutting ceremony, wearing pink accessories to support this cause, poster competitions and giving special goody bags containing bangles, clips, earrings, hair bands, jewelry and mehndi to the under-privileged girl students of Government Elementary School Kalyal Rawalpindi. The campus echoed with national songs like “Hum maaein, hum bhehenein, hum baitiaan” as everyone sang together in perfect harmony hoping for a brighter, enlightened, educated and prosperous Pakistan.

The term “Girl Child” is commonly used to distinguish the difficult challenges faced by girls under the age 18 from those faced by women. The UN International Day of the Girl Child is celebrated to acknowledge girls as a population that faces grave challenges including gender inequality and discrimination.

This year marks the fifth International Day of the Girl Child following the theme, “Girls’ Progress = Goals’ Progress: A Global Girl Data Movement”.

Speaking on the occasion, CEO Roots Ivy International/ Executive Director of Roots School System, DHA-1 campus, Islamabad Khadija Mushtaq said: “Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. IT is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. Our playing a small role does not serve the world.” Khadija Mushtaq has continued to diligently promote and encourage empathy and community services among all students and follow the fundamental philosophy of Roots that was inculcated 28 years ago by Founder Roots School System Mrs. Riffat Mushtaq. She emphasised that all students should incorporate community services in their daily routine by helping the underprivileged in their locality and by sharing the sentiments and bonding between the two segments of the society.

Founder RSS Riffat Mushtaq shared the values of love, empathy and peace among all fellow-beings and encouraged each student to believe in themselves and achieve their goals. She said: “Empowering women is empowering humanity. One of the best ways to achieve all of these goals is to provide girls with the education they deserve. On this international day of the girl child, let us work together to invest in education so that girls can advance in their personal development and contribute to our common future”. Riffat Mushtaq initiated social entrepreneurial skills in elementary schools 25 years ago under the slogan: “Each One, Teach One; Each One, Empower one!”

The day ended with the pledge: “No girl will be left out from school if she is given complete assurance of her health, safety and education. We have to invest in girls as investing in girls is investing in humanity.”