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Students and brides: a qualitative analysis of the relationship between girls’ education and early marriage in Ethiopia and India

Author: Anita Raj, Marissa Salazar, Emma C. Jackson, Natalie Wyss, Katherine A. McClendon, Aarushi Khanna, Yemeserach Belayneh and Lotus McDougal Year: 2019

Based on data collected in 2014, this paper examines how young people and marital decision makers describe their experience of two programmes started about twenty years ago in Ethiopia and India.

The India programme – RISHTA – is a community-based and youth-led programme implemented in rural areas of Jharkand. It trains peer educators to council youth on child marriage prevention, sexual and reproductive health education, and youth development opportunities.

The Ethiopia programme – Oromia Development Association (ODA) – is a school-based programme on comprehensive sexual and reproductive health (SRH) of adolescents. It is delivered by trained teachers who offer SRH education to adolescent girls and boys, covering topics like child marriage, early pregnancy, family planning and contraception, and vocational training.

Exploring values and norms associated with girls’ education, including married girls, the authors highlight that educating girls without fostering broader social change to advance gender equality will likely fail to address child marriage.

TAGS: Research article Ethiopia India Education Social norm change Support to married girls Empowering girls Prevention