Here’s a wrap up of how Girl Effect showed up at virtual side events held during the 75th United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) last week. Our CEO, Jessica Posner Odede, talked about the role of girls and technology to achieve the ambitions of the goals, as well as the impact of COVID-19 on girls and how we as a society can “build back equal” after the pandemic.

There are 17 Global Goals but for one goal unlocks 10 others and that’s Goal 5 – gender equality. From Goal 1 no poverty and Goal 4 quality education, to Goal 13 climate action, we believe that these goals rely on advancing gender equality. But the world wasn’t working for girls before 2020. And it definitely isn’t working for them now.

Take vaccines. Because of COVID the progress gained over the last 25 years has been lost in just 25 weeks.  Or contraceptives. Up to 47 million girls and women could lose access to them because of the pandemic.And the 20 million more secondary school girls forced to leave the classroom because of the crisis may never return. Leaving them at greater risk of violence, child marriage, malnutrition and pregnancy.

How do we use this moment as an inflection point, to imagine a different world that works better for girls?

Jessica joined several events during UNGA to discuss just this. Including a Building Back Equal panel session as part of the Global Goals Studio with Maria Cristina Gonzalez Noguera (Estee Lauder) and inspirational young leader Amanda Nguyen (Rise); an interview with Global Goals founders Project Everyone; and a thoughtful panel session Women and Girls connected: Tech for gender equality at Goals House with our partners Andrew Dunnett (Vodafone Foundation), Patricia OboNai (Vodafone, Ghana) and end-FGM campaigner Nimco Ali.

Watch again below!

Women & Girls Connected panel

“At Girl Effect we talk to a girl when she needs us most. We are that voice that speaks about the things that she is scared to talk to her mum, her sister and even her friend about” – Jessica Posner Odede