Every day 41 000 girls get married before their 18th birthday. Although child marriages can involve both girls and boys, it is mainly girls who are affected.
Girls such as Nafissa* (name has been changed), in Niger: “I stopped school when I got married”, says the teenager, “because of people’s mentality and prejudices. The wedding took place during school holidays. Then I became pregnant and never went back to school”. »
Early marriage has far-reaching consequences for the girls themselves, but also for their children, family and even their country. According to a report by the International Center for Research on Women and the World Bank Group, by 2030 early marriages will have cost developing countries billions of dollars.
These marriages are often explained by pressure from parents and family, poverty and the lack of opportunities. Limited access to quality education and the priority given to educating boys - partly because of insufficient job prospects – contribute to the perpetuation of this practice.
The girls concerned thus find themselves deprived of the chance to study and earn their own living. On top of that, they are also exposed to the risks of complications associated with pregnancy and childbirth.
In Bangladesh, CSI supports a project allowing girls to go to school and to get aware of their rights.