2 Objectives Define Child Marriage Outline Causes of Child Marriage Examine the Consequences of Child Marriage
3 “any person below the age of 18 years” Who is a Child?A child is defined as:“any person below the age of 18 years”
4 What is Child Marriage?Article 1 of the Convention on the Rights of the Child defines Child/Early Marriage as any marriage of a child younger than 18 years oldWhile child marriage affects both sexes, girls are affected most by this practice
5 What is Forced Marriage? It is defined as a marriage conducted without the valid consent of one or both partiesIt is a marriage in which duress - whether physical or emotional - is a factor (Forward UK, 2002)
6 Child/Forced Marriage Even if a child appears to give their consent, it is understood that anyone under the age of 18 is not able to make a fully informed choice on marriageThese marriages will ordinarily involve force, pressure or coercionThe children involved will usually lack the capacity to give their full consent
7 Why Does Child Marriage Occur? Poverty prevalence is considered to be one of the major causes of child marriage because:Young girls are regarded as an economic burden and her marriage to a much older man is believed to benefit the child and her family both financially and sociallyIn communities where child marriage is practiced, marriage is regarded as a transaction, often representing a significant economic activity for a family
8 Why Does Child Marriage Occur? The desire of the family to ensure that a girl is a virgin at the time of marriage especially in communities that consider it a virtue for a woman to be married as a virginIn some communities, young girls are encouraged to marry older men with the expectation that an he would act as a guardian against inappropriate behavior like extra-marital sex
9 Consequences of Child and Forced Marriage The child bride is not physically and sexually mature at the time of marriageChild brides are likely to become pregnant at an early age yet there is a strong correlation between the age of a mother and maternal mortality
10 Consequences of Child and Forced Marriage Child brides may also suffer vulnerability to HIV/AIDS, since their older husbands may already be infected from previous sexual encountersOwing to their age, the young girls may be unable to negotiate issues around the use of contraception and condoms that would protect them against HIV infection
11 Consequences of Child and Forced Marriage Owing to their early age girls are unable to demand fidelity from their husbandsIn some FGM practicing communities, FGM is carried out at puberty and then marriages are arranged immediately afterShe may suffer severe health consequences owing to sexual activity with her husband at an early age
12 Role of Education in Addressing Child and Forced Marriage Providing education to the Girl Child is the best way of addressing this problemThey should be encouraged to remain in schoolImproving access to education and eliminating gender gaps
13 ConclusionThe Innovative Woman Teacher should intervene by focusing on issues that:Encourage the girls who are already in school to stay in schoolProactively address the matters that may lead them to being victims of child/forced marriage.
14 QuestionsAny questions and comments from the class?