THE GIRL CHILD – Queenta N. Iruka

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A girl child is a biological female offspring from birth to eighteen (18) years of age. This is the age before one becomes a young adult. This period covers the Crèches Nursery or early childhood (0-55 years) primary (6-12years). During this period, the young child is totally under the care of the adult who maybe her parents or guardians and older siblings. It is made up of infancy, childhood, early and late adolescence stages of development. During this period, the child is malleable, builds and develops her personality and character. She is very dependent on the significant others, those on whom she models her behaviour, through observation repletion and imitation. Her physical, mental, social, spiritual and emotional development start and progress to get to the peak at the young adult stage.

A girl child has been denied her human rights and sometimes her basic needs in many cultures and societies.

A girl child has been at risk of sexual abuse, and exploitation and ability to achieve to her fullest potential, due to they are particularly vulnerable, they require additional protection.

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CULTURAL INFLUENCES ON A GIRL CHILD

In culture, a girl child is been denied some human right, like gender bias. The status of girls is significantly less than the boy in some culture and even in so many countries. And this makes them more vulnerable to discrimination and neglect. Discrimination and harmful practices against the girl child vary depending on cultural context.

CULTURAL INFLUENCES ON A GIRL CHILD
CULTURAL INFLUENCES ON A GIRL CHILD

The society and culture in which one grows up influence everything from development and parenting styles to what kinds of hardship one is more likely to face. In a society, where the girl child is forced to undergo Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) in order to regulate her sexual life, this practice infringes on the right of the girl child, also make her vulnerable to infection or lead to death.

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While biological development such as puberty tends to be universal across cultures, social development, such as the age at which children begin formal schooling or individuate from their parents, can differ greatly from one culture to the next.

Some society does not allow the girl child to acquire formal education, because of the belief that the girl child is meant to do domestic chores and care for the family. This practice has led to a high rate of illiteracy among women in those societies.

 

PROTECTION TO BE GIVEN TO A GIRL CHILD

Evidence suggests that gender and age norms play a crucial role in child trafficking Sexual abuse, and so on.

Trafficking is reportedly more common amongst women and girls child in Nigeria and Africa in general than men and boys. This may be attributed to the economic marginalization on of female that reduces employments opportunities and pushes them into exploitative forms of work, and general patterns of oppression which make it hard to resist abuse. This trafficking of girl child may also be using child domestic work as part of their training to become good wives and mothers.

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A girl child should be protected from any form of harm when you grant her an education, it is big protection given to her. A mother should be able to watch and protect her girl child development, is where you will see that a girl child is been molested, so mother should know the implication when they don’t protect their girl child. Some of the protection include:

  1. A powerful Legislation and institutional frameworks to protect a girl child vulnerable and exposed violence against a girl child occurs in homes, School, communities, churches and other places where a girl child should feel safe from violence, abuse and exploitation.
  2. Strengthened capacities of government and key stakeholders, including social welfare and justice services that prevent and respond to violence against a girl child.
  3. Using the law to end child, early and forced marriage and related human rights violations.
  4. To provide development, coordination and implementation of an inter-sectorial rational social norms changes strategy to end violence against a girl child including child marriage and other harmful traditional practices.
  5. To provide Mandatory Education for every girl child in respect to their tribe and religion.

RIGHT OF A GIRL CHILD

A girl child life is not respected as much as boys. The fact is that male child is considered more important in the social hierarchy in some part of the world, this means that many couples wish to have a son rather than a daughter.

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In some poorer regions of China, India and in other countries where it is not possible to find out the sex of the child before it is born, newborn baby girls are killed when there is the expectation of a male child. This practice is known as infanticide and mainly affects girls (that is female Infanticide).

A Girl Child
A Girl Child

THE RIGHT TO BE GIVEN A GIRL CHILD INCLUDES:

  1. RIGHT TO PROTECTION: Girls all over the world are victims of Child abuse, child trafficking, sexual abuse, child marriage, forced pregnancy, child molestation, and so on. It is very important to highlight that domestic violence, which in many places is considered a private matter, is most often suffered by the girls and women of the family. Sexual abuse is referred to as an act against a person intended to make them carry out sexual behaviour against their will. It can be physical or psychological and does not always involve physical contact with the victim, for instance when a girl is forced to be in pornographic pictures or videos or as in the case of forced prostitution. All of these are sexual abuse.

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It is an abuse of power and is one of the most harmful types of violence, both physically and psychologically, because it increases the risk of serious health problems such as sexually transmitted diseases, unwanted pregnancies and psychological damage leading to depression, suicide, and drug and alcohol abuse.

  1. RIGHT TO EDUCATION: Girls are expected to spend their time on household task or helping their mothers care for younger siblings. 96 million girls are currently illiterate, compared to 57 million boys. This is because in some countries and regions, attending school is not considered a priority for girls. And in a country life underlying nature of patriarchy, girl children often find themselves at the short end of the slick. Discrimination against girl’s child is rampant and due to the fear of abuse and exploitation, they are kept at home and not sent to school. Child marriage is yet another glaring issue due to which girls are forced to give going to school at an early age.
  2. RIGHT TO HEALTH LIVING: Few studies on newborns differentiate between boys and girls, however, it seems that girls are born with slight biological advantages over boys. Nevertheless, in many developing countries this tendency is reversed because girls are more often deprived of medical care, good hygiene, and sufficient nutrition. This means that they are more vulnerable to growth problems and death when they are still very young.

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Another serious problem concerning a girl’s health is child pregnancy. This particular problem occurs when pregnancy is the result of forced marriage and the girl is still too underdeveloped to safely carry a child.

Female genital mutilation is another violation of children’s rights. Every year approximately 3 million girls and teenagers suffer this practice/which can lead to irreversible health problems and fatal infections.

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THE DUTY OF A MOTHER TO A GIRL CHILD

As young girls develop and grow, their general feeling of self-esteem and certainty develops and changes. Unfortunately, in adolescence, a young girl’s certainty and feeling of self-esteem regularly fall. This is because of the way that starts in the preteen years, self-perception turns into the gauge by which numerous young girls measure their self-esteem. Certainty gets one with how a little young girl looks, and thus, how she feels about herself. The message our little young girl get is this, Women in our general public are esteemed dependent on their physical appearance.

THE DUTY OF A MOTHER TO A GIRL CHILD
THE DUTY OF A MOTHER TO A GIRL CHILD

Hence, motherhood goes beyond the idea of having one’s own child biologically. By adoption, a woman also becomes a mother of a child.

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Mothers are trusted by God because souls are entrusted in their care. To realize this is to realize the crucial role that mothers play in the lives of their girl child. She has great influence over them, which is why mothers need to exercise wisdom and righteousness throughout the days of their life, a task that can be quite daunting. But motherhood comes with this great responsibility. Mother have great roles to play in the lives of their children, especially their girl child. These roles include:

  • A MOTHER SHOULD PLAY THE ROLE OF NURTURE: As a mother, the most meaningful role is the role of a nurturer. When she nurtures her girl child well, love and goodness are awakened in their hearts. Because of a mothers’ love, she learns to love, as well and feel God’s love more profoundly.
  • A MOTHER SHOULD UNDERSTAND HER GIRL CHILD: When she feels this, she learns to trust her mother better. Listening is crucial to understanding. So, a mother should provide a listening ear to her girl child at every time, it is very important for a mother to be her daughter’s best friend because the child sees her mother as a friend she comfortable to discuss everything and anything with the mother. A mother should Listen to her daughter and encourage her to speak her mind at all time.

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  • A MOTHER SHOULD BE A POSITIVE ROLE MODEL:  A mother is the main role model in her girl child life.  Her daughter subconsciously takes in how her mother carries herself, regards herself, and thinks about herself. For this reason, mothers play a pivotal role in how a young girl navigates this challenging time. Since the mother is the most important person in the life of a child, she is greatly revered. Whatever the child observes from her, will all undoubtedly affect the child’s character. Her habits and behaviour become a role model for the girl child. A mother is said to be better than a hundred teachers. Her emotional strengths and weaknesses are an example for the girl child and will be followed for many years to come even though all of them may not be worthy.

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  • A MOTHER SHOULD PROVIDE PROTECTION AND SECURITY TO HER GIRL CHILD: When it comes to her girl child a mother should protect her girl child from the hands of the wicked. She should always safeguard the child from danger and difficulties. However, some mothers tend to be overprotective. It is wise for the girl child to learn to face some problems in life, according to his age and circumstances. A coddled girl child will be unable to face the realities of the world when she grows up, a world which will not be as considerate as her mother.
  • A MOTHER SHOULD BE MOTIVATOR TO HER GIRL CHILD: A mother should appreciate her girl child ability, don’t praise solely for appearance.  Encourage your daughter to take on new challenges, and give her the tools to master these new endeavours. Praise should be focused on your daughter’s accomplishments, efforts and capability. Mother’s play a critical role in their daughter’s sense of happiness and self-worth.

Remember, closeness and openness are the keywords in a standard mother-daughter relationship. Generally, The Mother Is the Light of the Home.”

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Queenta N. Duru Irukahttp://www.evergreennewsonline.com
A certified Senior Reporter/Advert Executive Evergreennewoline, Creative Writer/Graphic Designer/Political Analysts/ Entrepreneur & Fashionista

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