Child marriage can have devastating consequences for girls and their future children. Typically, it cuts short or ends a girl’s education, compromises her reproductive rights, sexual health, future employment and earnings, and perpetuates personal and community poverty. Globally, more than one in four girls are married as children – before the age of 18. In East and Southern Africa, the share is 36 per cent, and 10 per cent of girls in the region are married by age 15.
This report presents the results of a mapping of programmes and partnerships that seek to prevent and mitigate the effects of child marriage in East and Southern Africa. The mapping focused on 12 countries in the region where the prevalence of child marriage is greater than 30 per cent: Comoros, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Madagascar, Malawi, Mozambique, South Sudan, United Republic of Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
The findings are intended to serve as a basis for knowledge-sharing and strengthened coordination among governments, development partners, non-governmental organizations, civil society organizations, and youth-led organizations, and include the identification of best practices that can be replicated and taken to scale.