Breakthrough, the global human rights organisation on 21 October 2013 launched the campaign called Nation Against Early Marriage. The objective of the campaign is to influence, inform as well as initiate the changes on how early marriages are professed or accepted as the traditional norm.
Major Initiatives Planned During the Campaign
• The campaign includes training at the block levels with NGOs, CBOs, youth groups and self-help groups, mass media intervention as well as community mobilizations.
• The team included in the campaign engages the students at high school and middle school levels through leadership training, folk theatre, video vans as well as mobile shows.
Statistics Related to the Survey Carried out by Breakthrough
• The organisation in its survey included 3560 households in districts of Ranchi and Hazaribagh (Jharkhand) and Gaya (Bihar).
• The survey revealed that traditions and customs, lack of education and information, absence of the supportive environment, lack of livelihood, unequal gender norms as well as poverty lead to practices of early marriage.
• Around 50 percent women in the sample revealed that they got married between 13 to 18 years of age.
• The survey, in the meanwhile, also found that around 60 percent households had access to facilities such as television but girls watched televisions less than the boys.
• The survey found that men, when exposed to the social messages, were able to recall them in a better way than the women.
Rashmi Singh, Executive Director for the National Resource Centre for Women (NRCW) under the National Mission for Empowerment of Women (NMEW) explained that there is already the Prohibition of Child Marriage Act, 2006 but other institutional mechanisms such as Child Marriage Prohibition Officers were required to enforce the laws and curb child marriage and early marriage.
Breakthrough has its centres in India as well as in the US. It also has collaboration with the Ministry of Women and Child Development for this campaign.