WOW- Women of the World celebrated the UN International Day of the Girl on the Coca-Cola London Eye this morning, flying 180 schoolgirls aged between 14-18 from over 20 schools across London and beyond over London to help them explore their aspirations and dreams. The girls were paired with 180 highly influential and inspiring women mentors from across a range of professions and industries including science, film, media, engineering, sport, politics, transport, fashion and campaigning for 15-minute mentoring sessions celebrating the power and potential of girls. Mentors included: Baroness Deborah Bull, England netball team captain Ama Agbeze, Dianne Abbot MP, WOW Founder and Director Jude Kelly, Baroness Doreen Lawrence, television presenter AJ Adudu, former Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard, Justine Greening MP, Channel 4 news presenter Cathy Newman, Radio 1 presenter Clara Amfo, Penny Mourdant MP and Co-Leader of the Green Party Siân Berry, Emily Thornberry and actor Natascha McElhone.
Each girl was matched with three different mentors and had three 15-minute sessions during two complete rotations of the London Eye to discuss their dreams, ask for advice and hear stories from the mentors lives as they looked over the capital.
WOW ran events for UN International Day of the Girl on two opposite sides of the world, with hundreds of Australian girls celebrating with WOW at The Wheel of Brisbane, handing over to girls in London as their day of mentoring and celebrations ended and London’s begun.
Since 2012, 11th October has been marked as the International Day of the Girl to highlight and address the needs and challenges girls face, whilst also promoting girls’ empowerment and the fulfilment of their human rights.
WOW’s mentoring celebration was followed by a reception featuring an In Conversation with WOW’s Founder Jude Kelly CBE and Clara Amfo, exploring the theme of championing amazing girls and women who have made changes in their communities and beyond, and inspired others to do the same.
Jude Kelly, Founder, WOW – Women of the World Festivals said “Aiming for the sky is something girls need to be encouraged to do and WOW – Women of the World Festival’s International Day of the Girl event takes that literally by flying them over London to talk about their dreams with amazing women who’ve made a mark. It’s going to be exhilarating and inspiring for all of us.”
Sunny Jouhal, General Manager at the Coca-Cola London Eye said: “We are proud to be supporting Women of the World with this truly unique experience as they celebrate the UN International Day of the Girl. The opportunity to be mentored by so many influential and inspiring women, whilst soaring over the city skyline, will give everyone attending the chance to discuss really important topics with London as their backdrop.”
WOW’s International Day of the Girl celebrations come in the run up to 2020’s 10th anniversary WOW – Women of the World Festival, which takes place from 6-8 March at London’s Southbank Centre. Day passes are on sale now for Friday and Saturday, as well as evening events including Caroline Criado Perez: Invisible Women, Emma Dabiri: Don’t Touch My Hair, Bobby Baker’s Drawing on a (Grand) Mother’s Experience and a special International Women’s Day edition of Letters Live. More events will be announced later this autumn.
The WOW Foundation is proudly supported by Global Founding Partner Bloomberg and UK Major Partner Insuring Women’s Futures.
Photo credit: Ellie Kurtz