Plan International expanded their “Because I am a Girl” campaign to Cuenca, in the province of Azuay, this week. Local institutions hope to join with Plans Ecuador branch to deal with discrimination and violence that girls in this Andean province face.
Girls aged seventeen and under make up 18 percent of the population in Azuay. Forty-one percent of them have suffered some type of violence in their homes: 47 percent of rural girls and 34 percent of the girls in urban areas. Nine percent of girls do not attend elementary school, and 22 percent of those aged 13 and up don’t attend high school.
Illiteracy levels are at 9 percent for women, and only four percent for men in the province.
Stats also show that 46 percent of the girls between the ages of 12 and 17 discharged from hospitals in Azuay were there due to childbirth complication.
Plan International is active in 70 countries. The “Because I am a Girl” campaign was launched in New York on the first International Day of the Girl declared by the UN. The campaign will work on violence prevention, education prioritization for girls, and other goals until June 2016.