The International Center for Research on Women (ICRW) looks at how girl-centred programmes are helping to empower girls and prevent child marriage.
Through the assessment of four promising programmes run by CARE (Ethiopia), BRAC (Bangladesh), Save the Children (Egypt) and Pathfinder International (India), the paper highlights the critical role that girl-centred programming plays in catalysing a process of empowerment that enables her to make important decisions that affect the rest of her life - including when and whom to marry.
Successful programmes were found to catalyse empowerment by allowing girls to undergo an internal transformation by building their self-awareness of rights, increasing their self-efficacy and enhancing their life aspirations. Increasing opportunities and alternatives to child marriage aids this self-transformation.
Finally, girls need to be able to use their own voice to have influence over key family members and gatekeepers who make important decisions in their lives.