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Ending Child Marriage

The government of Nepal has made considerable progress in education planning, leading to significant improvements in terms of gender parity at primary level, but yet poor attendance, retention, and performance, high rates of grade repetition are common, and the enrollment data abide discrepancies inequality of access to an inclusive and effective education. Census (2011) justified it. Because it shows that still 14.9 % of children are out of school in Nepal and 27.7% in Dhanusha district (as cited in MOE, 2013). In the same way, Flash Report I of DOE (2016) show that drop out and retention rates for children in primary school are worrisome with only 60 percent of children completing primary education (grade 8). Furthermore, it explained that about 27.1 percent of students’ complete secondary education.

As can be observed, education status of girls’ in the Terai is very poor. Most of them are from poor and marginalized communities. Most of the girls’ drop out from school even not completing their primary or basic education due to child marriage. Worsen health of girls due to the maximum workload at home due to engaged in cooking, grass cutting. Girls’ became pregnant early in spite of maturity and led to maternal mortality rate and child mortality rate as well. Girls’ faced domestic violence from mother in law at home. Most of them suffer from sexually transmitted infection. There is no proper and sufficient plan for them at local and district level institutions and authorities. Thus, why children, especially girls are out of school, why their voices are not heard and respected, why there is no appropriate and sufficient plan for girls to mainstream them into the education system at local and district level institutions and authorities, why parents are not sending girls to school are the major concerns these days.

Therefore, LIFE Nepal will support evidence-based, girl-centered investments that empower girls with the information, skills and services they need to be healthy, educated and safe, helping them make a successful transition to adulthood. Similarly, LIFE will create an environment so that local governments, civil society and other partners must work together to ensure girls have access to education, health information and services, and life-skills training. That enables girls to stay in school and remain healthy, enjoy a broader range of options, and they are more likely to be able to avoid child marriage.  And, importantly, girls who are already married need to be supported. Therefore, LIFE will coordinate married girls with health facilities for reproductive health services to help them avoid early pregnancy. Those who become pregnant need access to appropriate care throughout pregnancy, childbirth and in post-partum period. Hence, they will be supported, if they choose, in returning to formal or non-formal school. Together, these measures lead to healthier families, higher levels of gender equality, stronger societies and more vibrant economies so that no society can afford the lost opportunity, waste of talent, or personal exploitation that child marriage causes.

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