Adolescent girls are one of the hardest groups to reach in societies. The challenges they face are often under-reported or described on their behalf, but without the inclusion of their perspective, solutions designed to support them aren’t as effective as they could be.Covid-19 has exposed this issue like never before. The immense coverage of the pandemic is lacking the voice of the adolescent girl – particularly in low and middle income nations.

This has consequences. The hard-won gains for girls achieved over the last decade risk slipping backwards – with a surge in gender based violence, teen pregnancies and restricted freedoms. Put simply, girls out of school now might never go back.

This is a critical moment for gender equality. Putting girls at the centre of building the solutions is the way to define a ‘new normal’ after lockdown that is more positive and equal. But how?

The need for accurate data to understand girls’ lives and needs has never been more true than it is now. This is central to everything we do at Girl Effect.

Hear Her Voice is a unique project giving 25 girls in five countries a platform to report on their experiences of life in lockdown – in their own voice – via digital diaries.

Our digital researchers – Technology Enabled Girl Ambassadors (TEGAs) – in India, Bangladesh, Nigeria, Malawi and the USA are unable to conduct qualitative interview research in their communities during the pandemic. Instead, they have turned the cameras on themselves to create weekly digital diaries answering co-created questions that are submitted via mobile phones through our bespoke TEGA app.

We’re sharing data and insights from this project to make sure organisations working with girls understand girls’ experiences of life in lockdown – both good and bad – so that they can design for their short and long term needs.

The Hear Her Voice site will be updated on a weekly basis with new video clips, articles, and films, telling the human-stories behind the headlines during this pandemic.

Watch the introductory video below.

Hear Her Voice: Follow their stories at