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Education key to ending child marriage in Rural Areas

August 27, 2015

EDUCATION is key in the fight against early child marriages, especially in remote or rural areas. With awareness campaigns by organizations like Real Open Opportunities for Transformation Support (ROOTS), the rural community is being enriched with enough knowledge about early, forced and child marriages.

ROOTS advocates for economic and social justice and the organization is campaigning against early marriages. Currently we are focusing on rural and remote areas in Mashonaland Central. On the day of the African Child on June 16, we held our campaign at Case Farm in Shamva. The response of people at Case showed vividly that people in these remote regions lack knowledge despite the obvious assumptions that everyone knows that early marriages are not good. Some know they are not good but don’t know why.

Case farm farmers expressed their gratitude towards ROOTS pointing out that it was their first time like this and they learn a lot. They admitted they hadn’t known many of the problems caused by early marriages for istance, domestic violence and HIV and AIDS. They encouraged each other to stop early child marriages and said they are supporting ROOTS in this campaign.

Representing the Counselor, Mrs Murehwa advised parents not to sell their children for gold. The main economic activity in Shamva besides farming is gold panning. Because of poverty, some parents give away their daughters into early or forced marriage in exchange for gold. Mrs Murehwa advised Case farm farmers to stop this as a person’s life is worth more than everything, even gold. She elucidated that early marriages are leading to domestic violence and in most cases these marriages do not last. All this information was beneficial to people at Case Farm.

Meanwhile, ROOTS is continuing with its campaign and their next event will be at Nyava, a rural village in Bindura. The organization will conduct a street bash which will execute ‘edutainment’ for the villagers. The topics at Nyava will be early child marriages and HIV as the organization drives its mission to promote economic justice for young people to recognize and realize their personal development and sexual reproductive health rights.

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