1000 Voices for 1000 Girls: Tackling Gender-Based Violence and Child Marriage Around the World

By: Georgia Free

Imagine if, here in Australia, boys were the only ones allowed to go to school – and instead of getting an education, young girls were married off.

It’s incomprehensible. But it’s happening today, and it’s happening at an alarming rate.

Every year, 12 million girls are married before they turn 18 – a sobering statistic of a growing crisis.

Child Marriage: What Can Be Done?

World Vision has launched 1000 Voices for 1000 Girls to bring more awareness and action to gender-based violence around the world.

World Vision CEO Daniel Wordsworth shared some positive news that the goal of 1000 sponsorships had doubled.

“We’re sitting at about 1800 girls sponsored at the moment, and we’re aiming for 2000,” Daniel said in an interview.

“But there’s always more girls to help.”

A Growing Problem

Though gender-based violence has consistently been a pressing issue, Daniel said both COVID and the hunger crisis has exacerbated the problem further than ever – with child marriage rates doubling in some countries.

“When you find yourself with five kids, and you’re struggling to feed them, one element of your coping strategy is to marry off one of your daughters,” Daniel admitted sadly.

“Girls pay the price.”

Hope For The Future

Through 1000 Voices for 1000 Girls, Daniel hopes that economic stability and freedom can be given to more women and families across the world, and give girls a better future, through access to education and healthcare.

“This is a problem we can address,” he said. “We always see the worst of the things that are going on in the world.  But it’s not all bad, it’s almost overwhelmingly good.

“There are things we can do. We can stop girls getting married.”

Find out more about 1000 Voices for 1000 Girls

Article supplied with thanks to Hope Media.

Feature image: Melissa Doyle, 1000 Voices ambassador. Image supplied by World Vision.