Givology Staff's Blog

Ten Facts to Know About Child Marriage

By Julia Tofan
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Girls attending a workshop to learn their legal rights.
Photo credit: Apne Aap
Child marriage is illegal in many areas of the world, but it continues to occur. Girls are routinely subjected to marriage under the age of 18 with significant age differences between partners. The girls are often removed from their homes and schools and face physical and sexual abuse. Despite the danger and injustice of child marriage, the practice continues due to tradition, poverty, and gender inequality. In order to eradicate child marriage and ensure girls get the education they deserve, we need to take action. Start by learning more with these ten facts!
1. Worldwide, more than 700 million women alive today were married as children. That's one fourth of all women. Furthermore, more than one in three (250 million) were married before 15.
2. "Some child brides are as young as eight or nine."
3. Child marriage is typically associated with pregnancy. "Girls younger than 15 are five times more likely to die in childbirth than women in their 20s."
4. "Among countries with the highest prevalence of child marriage, girls with three years of schooling or less are up to six times more likely to marry young than girls with secondary education."
5. 10% to 20% of girls who drop out during their secondary education do so due to child marriage.
6. In "Mauritania and Nigeria, more than half of adolescent girls aged 15 to 19 who are currently married have husbands who are 10 or more years older than they are."
7. Females in the poorest 20% of the population are 2.5 times more likely to be married during childhood than females in the wealthiest 20% .
8. "A study conducted by ICRW in two states in India found that girls who were married before 18 were twice as likely to report being beaten, slapped or threatened by their husbands than girls who married later."
9. "Girls who marry early are more likely to believe that a man is sometimes justified in beating his wife than women who marry later. For example, in Kenya, 36% of girls married before 18 believe that a man is sometimes justified in beating his wife, compared to 20 percent of married women."
10. "Boys are also affected  33 million men today were married before the age of 15 and 156 million before the age of 18."
Child marriage is internationally recognized as a threat to fundamental human rights and if we don't take action, [url=]the total number of girls married in childhood is predicted to reach 950 million by 2030 and 1.2 billion by 2050.[/url]
Want to be part of the solution? Help [url=]fund The Last Girl[/url], an effort to give children born to prostituted mothers in India's red light district access to education. The Last Girl arms children with the education they need to break the cycle of prostitution and child marriage and access a better life.
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