To mark the first ever International Day of the Girl Child, the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) released a new report on child marriage around the world and what should be done to eradicate it.
The report, "Marrying Too Young: End Child Marriage", sheds light on child marriage prevalence and trends in developing countries, and provides a glimpse into the future by describing what countries may face if current trends in child marriage continue.
It finds that girls who are poor, have little or no education and live in rural areas are most likely to enter child marriages. Girls living in rural areas of the developing world are twice as likely to wed before age 18 as their urban counterparts, and girls with no education are over three times more likely to do so than those with secondary or higher education.
Child marriage violates girls' rights, denies them of their childhood, disrupts their education, jeopardizes their health, and limits their opportunities.
Therefore, the report calls on governments and leaders to end child marriage by:
The Day's observance also included the launch of "Too Young To Wed", an art exhibition and social media campaign hosted by UNFPA and VII Photo Agency. Featuring photography by Stephanie Sinclair and video by Jessica Dimmock, the show highlights the personal narratives of girls from Afghanistan, Ethiopia, India, Nepal and Yemen.
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