Various statistics have shown that child marriage, which is defined as any marriage where at least one of the parties is under 18 years of age, is prevalent in many parts of the world.
Globally, more than 650 million women were married before their 18th birthday – UNICEF
about 250 million of those married were coerced into the union before the age of 15. Although boys are also married as children, the practice is more prevalent among girls, who are said to be disproportionately affected.
Nigeria presently accounts for an estimated 22 million child brides, a figure that may increase by seven million in 2050. – UNICEF
SOME CAUSES OF CHILD MARRIAGE
The two major causes of child marriage in Nigeria are TRADITIONAL PRACTICES and POVERTY. These mostly shadows other factors such as
A. Protecting family honour.
B. Quest for protection.
C. “Distorted” Religious believes.
EFFECTS OF CHILD MARRIAGE ON THE GIRL CHILD
Child marriage has far-reaching effects on girls’ physical and mental health and lifelong opportunities.
Girls who marry as children are less likely to reach their full potential.
They face separation from family and friends during a critical stage of their lives.
They’re expected to take on the role of a grown woman — running a household and raising a family — rather than going to school and participating in healthy social activities and age-appropriate play.
A child bride usually doesn’t get to choose her own future.
THE COALITION OF CIVIL SOCIETIES ON ENDING CHILD MARRIAGE IN NIGERIA.
“The Coalition” is an embodiment of CSOs pushing for the curb in child marriages in Nigeria.
With support from Girls Not Brides, the coalition have been actively involved in advocacy,influencing policy making, mediation, protection, and robust awareness creation.
Through the Coalition, many success stories have been recorded and the impact is clearly felt through the communities.
Let us join our voices in advancing the rights of the child by contributing our quota to curb child marriage.
_CYPF EDITORIAL CORNER