In 2017, Rona Ambrose put forward a bill requiring judges in Canada to undergo training on sexual assault law. It was one of her last pieces of proposed legislation while acting as the interim leader of the Conservative Party of Canada, and since retiring from politics, Rona has continued to advocate for girls and women across the globe. Her latest project is a children’s book called The International Day of the Girl: Celebrating Girls Around the World, published this fall.
To coincide with International Day of the Girl on Sunday, October 11, Rona spoke with CTV News about her new book and acknowledging the importance of the issues that girls face every day. Rona was one of the people who first pushed the UN to establish International Day of the Girl, in an effort to raise awareness about how young girls have their own set of struggles that they face. The book, co-written by Jessica Dee Humphreys and illustrated by Simone Shin, tells stories about nine girls from different countries who have had to battle through adversity. Issues covered range from struggling with illiteracy to surviving in a refugee camp to early childhood marriage. A portion of the book’s proceed will be donated to Plan International Canada.
Among the stories in the book, Rona chose to include one based on the efforts of Shannen Koostachin, a member of the Attawapsikat First Nation community. Faced with severely lacking educational facilities, Shannen led a campaign that garnered support from across Canada to build a new school and hold the government accountable for promised resources.
“We’ve highlighted her story in this book so that other kids from around the world will know that Canadians think of these issues too. And we need to remind Canadians that we have these issues right here in our own country,” Rona said to CTV.
Meanwhile, the bill Rona proposed—which unfortunately stalled in the senate just prior to an election—has been revived by the Liberal government and is set to be passed in the coming months.
The Honourable Rona Ambrose is a dynamic national leader, a champion for the rights of women and girls, the former Leader of Canada’s Official Opposition in the House of Commons, and the former leader of the Conservative Party of Canada.