SIERRA LEONE

Marie Claire (Malaysia) - - World Report -

“Fat­mata, 15, with her son, and her friend Sia visit the girls’ club set up in Free­town by the UN Pop­u­la­tion Fund, where they can go to spend some time and talk. Fat­mata was re­cently mar­ried. It hap­pened at the time of the Ebola epi­demic, the schools had closed. When this hap­pens, it trig­gers a surge in child mar­riages. Fam­i­lies con­sider that when girls can’t go to school, they’re no longer pro­tected. They have these girls on their hands and they say: ‘Let’s marry them. Ed­u­ca­tion is a ma­jor pro­tec­tive fac­tor against child marriage, and our foun­da­tion ‘Too Young to Wed’ gives 450 schol­ar­ships, ev­ery year, for girls to go to school.”

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