How can we end child marriage, a traditional practice that causes untold harm to millions of girls a year across South Asia? Ending child marriage will be no easy task in South Asia, where nearly half of all girls marry before the age of Participants at the Girls Not Brides meeting felt, however, that by coming together in partnership they can build momentum towards ending the practice. Traditional perceptions of girls and women, cultural and religious practices, as well as economic considerations, all help to perpetuate child marriage across South Asia. Participants shared that in Pakistan, for example, the devastation caused by the recent flooding has led to an increase in early marriage in some areas. During the conflict in Sri Lanka, mothers sought to marry off their children at a young age in an attempt to keep them away from the frontline.
Changes in Prevalence of Girl Child Marriage in South Asia
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Ending child marriage in South Asia: “a human mission”
The DHS are nationally representative surveys that measure demographics, health, and nutrition with standard measures across nations and over time. Data collection and management procedures are described in detail elsewhere. All data were collected from women in or near households but not necessarily in a private setting. The DHS procedures were approved by ICF Macro International institutional review board and the ethics review boards of each nation included in the study.
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