The migrant girl’s journey

By Rodrigo Barraza García | April 30, 2020 | The Americas | Freedom from Violence & Exploitation, Gender Equity

What do adolescent girls experience during migration? What do their journeys look like? A new infographic shares findings from Central America, Mexico, and the United States.

Migration often offers girls and young women the possibility to exercise their agency and build a dignified life. It can be an empowering strategy to gain independence, escape violence, and contribute to their families’ wellbeing. Today, adolescent girls are on the move, and their journeys often do not coalesce into a single trajectory, experience, or story.

At the same time, due to deeply rooted gender inequalities, xenophobia, and lack of transnational protection systems across the Americas, migration exposes girls and young women to multiple forms of violence. Migration translates into a series of complex and unprecedented vulnerabilities that begin in girls’ communities of origin and that are exacerbated along – and long after – the journey.

In 2020, following a participatory design process with our local partners, Global Fund for Children launched an infographic to raise awareness about the specific situations and needs of adolescent migrant girls.

A Migrant Girls' Journey


Across the region, we need to develop policies that offer adolescent migrant girls greater opportunities to shape their futures, advance their rights, and lead healthy and productive lives no matter where they live. For all people, especially girls, migration should be a choice and not a struggle to survive.

In 2017, GFC began a three-year initiative to support, protect, and empower adolescent girls in migration, working with 14 community-based organizations across the United States, Mexico, and Guatemala. To date, this initiative has reached more than 2,500 adolescent girls with critical humanitarian aid, shelter, legal advice, psychosocial support, and girl-centered programming. GFC’s focus on movement-building has also supported these local organizations in their efforts to raise the voices of adolescent migrant girls across the region.

Header photo: View of the US-Mexico border at Playas de Tijuana. © Global Fund for Children

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