Globally, child marriage prevalence has dropped 15% over the last decade. But progress has been uneven, with girls from the most underserved communities – particularly in conflict and crisis settings – still at greatest risk. At the structural and individual level, intersecting factors like ethnicity, caste, sexual orientation, gender identity and disability also put some girls at greater risk.
In the Child Marriage Research to Action Network’s (the CRANK) third research meeting of 2022, we discussed “Supporting the most marginalised girls – what can we learn from the evidence on child marriage?”.
You can find the session recording, presentations and key resources below.
There are gaps in the evidence on how to support married, divorced and separated girls, and all girls at increased risk of child marriage on account of intersecting factors at the individual, community and societal levels. In this session we looked at evidence from recent studies that aim to bridge this gap and generate evidence that can support better programme and policy interventions to support the girls who have been most marginalised.
This CRANK research meeting was a space to:
- Discuss the evidence and learnings from three studies that focus on supporting marginalised girls at risk of child marriage in three different contexts.
- Hear brief updates from researchers and practitioners on new or current child marriage research.
- Cross-sectoral interventions that act at multiple levels of a girl’s eco-system are more effective than single-issue interventions that do not engage communities. Cash transfers could be effective in addressing household poverty (a driver of child marriage), if coupled with empowerment programmes and skills building for girls.
- Evidence from girls displaced by conflict in South Sudan and the Kurdistan area of Iraq shows:
- Strong links between being divorced, widowed or married and poor mental health outcomes. This is closely related to exclusion from education and social networks, lack of decision-making power, exploitation and abuse.
- Displaced girls living with disabilities have difficulties accessing education, are often harassed, may feel they are a burden to their families and have fewer quality marriage prospects.
- Evidence from the Dominican Republic shows the link between gender non-conforming individuals experiencing violence and exclusion, and marrying before 18. Reasons for marriage were economic and to escape violence and abuse in their natal home, including sexual violence meant to “correct” their sexual orientation. Forced marriage was driven by religious and traditional norms around gender.
The moderators and speakers were:
- Elvira Constantina Pablo Antonio, Policy and Member Engagement Officer for Latin America and the Caribbean, Girls Not Brides: The Global Partnership to End Child Marriage.
- Karen Austrian, Director, GIRL Center and Senior Associate, Population Council, Kenya.
- Kimberly Howe, Assistant Research Professor and Research Director of Conflict and Governance and Elizabeth Stites, Research Director and Associate Professor at Tufts University.
- Rosalba Karina Crisostomo, Executive Director, Colesdom - Comunidad de Lesbianas Inclusivas Dominicanas, Dominican Republic.
- Session recording (English)
- Enregistrement de la séance (français)
- Grabación de la sesión (español)
- The Adolescent girls initiative – Kenya: A multisectoral approach to delay marriage for marginalized girls (PPTX, 7.7MB)
- Early Marriage among Female Youth in Displacement: The Kurdistan Region of Iraq & South Sudan (PPTX, 2.7MB)
- Yo soy todas esas niñas que botaron de su casa (español) (PPTX, 13.6MB)
- CRANK Research Meeting Agenda 28 September (PDF, 274.3kB)
- Ordre du jour séance de recherche CRANK 28 septembre (français) (PDF, 281.2kB)
- Agenda reunión de investigación CRANK 28 de septiembre (español) (PDF, 286.2kB)
Agenda, presentations, and recording / Ordre du jour, présentations et enregistrement / Agenda, presentaciones y grabación
- Key takeaways_CRANK_Supporting the most marginalised girls (English) (PDF, 243.3kB)
- Points à retenir_CRANK_Appuyer les filles les plus marginalisées (PDF, 282.9kB)
- Principales aportaciones_CRANK_Apoyar ninas y adolascentes en situación de mayor marginación (PDF, 269.6kB)
- Impacts of Multisectoral Cash Plus Programs on Marriage and Fertility After 4 Years in Pastoralist Kenya
- Circumscribed Lives: Separated, divorced, and widowed female youth in South Sudan and the Kurdistan region of Iraq
- Life after Marriage: An analysis of the experiences of conflict-affected female youth who married under age 18 in South Sudan and the Kurdistan region of Iraq
- The Cost of Being Female: Mental Health and Psychosocial Support (MHPSS) of displaced female youth in South Sudan and the Kurdistan region of Iraq
- "Yo soy todas esas niñas que botaron de su casa" (español)
- "I am all those girls who got kicked out of their house" (English) (PDF, 123.0kB)