Every day, 41,000 girls marry before they are 18 years old. That’s 15 million girls every year. While child marriage can happen to both boys and girls, in most places around the world, the practice mostly affects girls.
Girls like Nafissa* (not her real name), from Niger.
“I stopped (going to) school in order to marry,” says the young teen, “It was because of people’s mentality and their prejudices. I was married during a school break and, before I could return, I became pregnant. After that, I never returned.”
Child marriage deeply affects child brides, their children, their families, and even countries. Ending it is a target under the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. Indeed, child marriage will cost developing countries trillions of dollars by 2030, according to a new report by the World Bank Group and the International Center for Research on Women.