POSTED October 30, 2023
Girls, not brides: ending child marriage – a global call to action
41,000 young girls wed before their 18th birthday every day worldwide
By Simran Bhatia, digital content services manager, Canada
Child Marriage: A Global Challenge Every day, 41,000 young girls around the world are forced into marriages before they even reach the age of 18. That’s a staggering 15 million girls every year robbed of their childhood and future potential. In some regions, more than 1 in 3 girls become child brides.
Many girls who become young brides or young mothers have no choice but to quit school, continuing the cycle of poverty. Josselyn from Nicaragua knows this all too well. Becoming a mother at just 16 made it difficult for her to continue high school. She shares, ‘When I got pregnant, my partner told me that studying was no longer an option.’
‘When she reached puberty at the age of 12, we had her marry, as we couldn’t afford to keep her in school. Following our tradition, we also intend to have our younger daughter marry.’ – Josselyn’s Mother
One of the Best Ways: Keeping Girls in School
There is hope in the data. One of the most effective ways to end child marriage is by keeping girls in school. Each year of secondary education may reduce the likelihood of marrying before the age of 18 by five percent or more in many countries. By contrast, child brides are much more likely to drop out of school and complete fewer years of education than their peers who marry early.
We’re helping change mindsets, but we need to continue challenging existing gender norms, inequality, and exclusion. This means empowering girls to complete school and seek higher education to understand their rights.
Make a difference today with your donation today to help us put an end to child marriage. Together, we can empower young lives and break the chains of early matrimony.
ABOUT CHILDREN BELIEVE:
Children Believe works globally to empower children to dream fearlessly, stand up for what they believe in — and be heard. For 60+ years, we’ve brought together brave young dreamers, caring supporters and partners, and unabashed idealists. Together, we’re driven by a common belief: creating access to education — inside and outside of classrooms — is the most powerful tool children can use to change their world.