• Posted on: 28 May 2020

International Day of Girl Child 11th October 2019

As the world celebrates International Day of the Girl on 11 October, Forum des femmes Autochtones Du Cameroun is calling for greater investments to improve girls’ education, skills, and job prospects in Cameroon. We stress on the importance of creating opportunities and safe spaces for girls’ voices to be heard and listened to in decisions that affect them. Madame Bouba Aeisatu, National Coordinator of Forum des Femmes Autochtones Du Cameroun, said that more attention needs to be given in girls’ education to provide job-relevant skills and trainings to enable them to participate in the workforce and to move from dreaming to achieving a better future.

Customs and tradition are key drivers of child marriage. Parents are under pressure to marry off their daughters as early as possible in an effort to prevent her from becoming sexually active before marriage, a woman who does so brings dishonor to her family and community. Because marriage often determines a woman’s status in many societies. Parents also worry that if they do not marry their daughter according to social expectations, they will not be able to marry them at all. Forced child marriage also is route to cementing family clan and tribal connections or settling obligations Said Amina Suibou.
Every year, 12 million girls are married globally before the age of 18, depriving them of their rights to education, health and a life of their choosing. “More than 1 out of 3 girls in Cameroon are married before they reach 18, but prevalence rates vary widely across regions. In the north 73% of girls marry as opposed to 13% in the Littoral Region. Lack of education therefore, is strongly linked to the prevalence of child marriage 79% of women aged 20-24 with no education and 45 with primary school education were married by 18, compare to 13 of women with at least secondary school.
Evidence shows that girls who attend secondary school are three times less likely to be child brides. They also have better economic prospects, fewer and healthier children, and are more likely to ensure that their own children are not married before 18. Rachel Yates, Interim Executive Director of Girls Not Brides: The Global Partnership to End Child Marriage, which comprises of over 1300 civil society organizations, said: “Investing in efforts to end child marriage isn’t just the right thing to do – it’s also smart economics”. When girls are educated instead of being married young, and have opportunities to earn an income, they are more likely to lead happier, healthier lives, and to contribute to the growth and development of their communities. Ending child marriage has to be a critical part of creating a ‘Girl Force’ of empowered girls who are able to reach their full potential, whilst ensuring we meet our global development goals.”
Under the theme, “Girl Force: Unscripted and unstoppable”, International Day of the Girl will highlight how with the right skills and support, girls can break barriers and build a better world for themselves and future generations. To mark the day, Forum des Femmes Autochtones Du Cameroun will organize an educative talk with the Mbororo students who are affected by the sociopolitical crises on Child marriage in conflict situation, Identify their needs and priority, future dreams and make them fly at Government Bilingual high school Koutaba, West region Cameroun, A press release will be issued and media interview.

The Executive Director
Mrs Bouba Aeisatu