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Girl child

Salia, now 18, tends to animals to provide for herself and her family. Just two years ago, Salia thought she would be a child bride.
UNFPA

Two years ago, 16-year-old Salia Shemsu waited to be married off. Like many young girls in Ethiopia, it was only a matter of time before she would need to leave her family for a husband. Then an opportunity she never expected arrived. A local announcement called for young people to join an entrepreneurship programme. Salia responded immediately. Salia’s district is among 30 in Ethiopia where a joint UNFPA-UNICEF programme is now empowering vulnerable adolescent girls and boys to support themselves and make healthy decisions – by providing them with the knowledge and skills to do so.

Mariéme Jamme, a World Economic Forum Young Global Leader with students at Morneau Shepell Secondary School in Kakuma
UNHCR

Mariéme Jamme, who received no education until she was 16, is now a technology entrepreneur with a mission to train young women. Mariéme is one of 16 World Economic Forum Young Global Leaders (YGLs) on a visit to Kakuma, and the Kalobeyei settlement in north-western Kenya, to meet refugees and host communities.

ReliefWeb

"It's a crime. It's like wiping a person away because you take everything away from them." (KII - Women's Rights Advocate, Kandahar) Child marriage in Afghanistan persists at rates that suggest at least one in three young girls will be married before they turn 18.

Fatimata writes and draws in her school notebooks inside her parents' tent. Behind her, piled up, are the mattresses and blankets that would have served as her dowry.
UNHCR

Fatimata, 12, had a narrow escape after resisting an arranged marriage, but her case reflects a wider problem among Malian refugees in Mauritania.