On June 4, 2000, The Hunger Project-Bangladesh proposed celebrating ‘Kanyashishu Dibas’ to create a large social movement around protecting and developing the rights of girl children. Several non-governmental organizations, social and cultural organizations, and prominent individuals who were working for the protection of girl child rights also supported this proposal. After the celebration of that day, which indeed raised social awareness about the need to protect the rights of girl children, the movement — the National Girl Child Advocacy Forum — was born.
In 2011, the NGCAF was instrumental in incorporating “Girl Child Development” chapter (section 18) in the National Women Development Policy. We have also contributed to the “Rules” of the recently approved Child Marriage Restraint Act 2017. Now, NGCAF is working on developing comprehensive Sexual Harassment Prevention policy with special focus on harassment on public places and institutions.
Today, the National Girl Child Advocacy Forum is a network 3,879 active members in 275 units across the country. It includes 166 Civil Society Organizations and 27 prominent individuals, who lead the national strategy of this network to carry out gender-focused awareness campaigns at every level of society, including the celebration of National Girl Child Day each year across the country.
Below are the demographics of this national network (as of 28 February 2018):
Geographical Distribution of NGCAF Units
|Division||NGCAF Units||NGCAF Unit Members|
|District Units||Upazila Units||Union Units||Total Unit||District Units||Upazila Units||Union Units||Total Members|
Supporting NGCAF network
In addition to the National Girl Child Advocacy Forum’s core activities, The Hunger Project is implementing a project to reduce gender-based violence in support of the NGCAF network. This project, the Girls Advocacy Alliance (GAA), is supported by Plan International and funded by Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Through the program, The Hunger Project contributes to reducing gender-based violence,especially child marriage, trafficking, online sexual exploitation and sexual harassment in the workplace. Activities include work on the national level to lobby and engage in advocacy, as well as support to NGCAF stakeholders in 10 Upazilas in Barisal district.