In India, as in many parts of the world, gender inequality and poverty close off countless life options not only for girls but also young boys from marginalized communities.
According to the 2011 census ‘‘2.3% of all women or girls who were ever married or were married in 2011 were married while they were not yet 10 years of age”. India has the sixth highest prevalence of child marriages in the world, with one in every three, child bride living in India.
Such facts clearly demonstrate that in order to ensure prevention of child marriage and its ill-consequences on a sustained basis can be only through mindset change, by challenging the gender norms. It would require engagement of both girls and boys with spaces that allow interaction, leadership and decision-making skills. Legal reforms alone are not enough to bring a change in the scenario so deeply rooted in the socio economic cultural background of the community and society.
The program program My Life, Mere Faisle aims to create a space where adolescents and young people can come together to learn about themselves, their aspirations, and learn from each other in a diverse group setting. It aims to be an empowering space where young people co-create the space to understand themselves better, understand issues and take action in society, and nourish relationships to become socially conscious leaders in their own capacity and handle conflicts in an empathetic manner. This intervention is run across 6 locations in 5 states of India with 6 partner organization facilitating cross border dialogues and engagement of young people on the issue of early and child marriage.
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