Children and adolescent girls marry and enter informal unions – by choice or by force – for many, complex, inter-related reasons. So, to end child marriage we first need to understand the systems, norms and behaviours that drive it, and what works to end it in different contexts.
We will make faster, longer-lasting change if we listen to those affected by child marriage and work across sectors and with diverse stakeholders at all levels to end the practice.
Girls – in all their diversity – must be at the centre of solutions to end child marriage. Families and communities must be engaged in transforming the negative social norms that limit girls’ choices. By working together, we can extend gender equality in the home and in public spaces, so that girls can reach their full potential.
To make changes at scale, international bodies, governments, and political and faith leaders need to come together and commit to putting human rights standards into action all over the world. This means targeted investments and programming to end child marriage and build girls’ agency. It means ensuring girls and women have access to quality education, sexual and reproductive health care, gender-responsive social protection systems and a fair and equal labour market. Current funding is nowhere near enough to match the scale of child marriage worldwide.
This is why Girls Not Brides member organisations collaborate with a wide range of individuals, organisations and social movements to transform girls’ lives. To learn more about how we work together, or to connect with an organisation working where you are, explore Our Partnership pages.
Find out more about the drivers of child marriage, sector-specific solutions, advocacy and activism, and pathways to gender equality through our Learning & Resources pages.