Day of the Girl 2019

On International Day of the Girl, Plan International works with girls to amplify their voices by staging girl “takeovers” in a mighty display of girls’ empowerment and leadership potential.

This International Day of the Girl was our biggest demonstration of girl’s power and potential yet. 1,000 takeovers. Over 60 countries.

A #GirlsTakeover involves a girl stepping into the role of a leader to call for social and political change to tear down the barriers of discrimination that continue to hold girls back.

International Day of the Girl in Ireland


In Ireland, we worked with our Youth Advisory Panel to organise #GirlsTakeover events with prominent politicians, CEOs, and senior academics who stepped aside for young women to take over the reins for the day.

Aoife Dunne, who is at secondary school in Co Laois, Emily O’Donovan of DCU, and Grace McNally, who is at secondary school in Co Meath, found themselves taking over from the Lord Mayor of Dublin Paul McAuliffe, Joe Duffy, CEO of BNY Mellon Bank, Tara McMorrow, Associate Dean of Science at UCD and the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

Because women are underrepresented in politics, finance and science, the takeovers are to campaign for women to have proper access to leadership and decision-making in areas where they are not usually visible.

Panel discussion

(L-R): Razan Ibraheem, Kate Smith (Youth Advisory Panel), Diana Bunici (MC), and Louise McSharry.

Education in schools has the power to shape culture, attitudes and behaviours towards girls and young women. How girls and young women are portrayed through the in textbooks, in the media, in advertising, on screen, and in other forms of communication significantly influences how the world views girls and how they view themselves.

Girls and young women all around the world have said that they are influenced by what they see. Representation matters for young women, especially those who exist on the margins.

We heard from powerful women who have been breaking barriers in their own ways in their particular fields:

  • Louise McSharry (broadcaster and writer)
  • Razan Ibraheem (journalist and human rights activist)
  • Kate Smiht (member of our Youth Advisory Panel and is currently studying to be a primary school teacher)
  • Diana Bunici – MC (Plan International Ireland Ambassador)

The discussion was excellent and explored a few key topics such as women and media and the stereotypes the panellists have faced and overcame in their lives.

This Cailín Can

For this year’s International Day of the Girl, we are delighted to launch a ‘chari-tee’ collection in collaboration with Plan International Ireland Ambassador Amy Huberman and Hairy Baby Clothing Company.

ALL profits from the t-shirts, totes and hoodies are being donated to Plan International Ireland, to support our work changing the lives of girls.