Child Marriage in Dembia Woreda of North Gondar

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Addis Ababa University


Regardless of' the law whi ch prohibits child marriage. many lema Ie chi ldren are being wedded in Dembia Woreda of North GondaI'. The practice of child marriage is un checked and ch ildren have become victims of the tradition. The objective ol' this study was to assess the magnitude of the problem of child marriage in Dembia Woreda, to understand the underlying reasons, to identi f\ the perceived benefits of child marriage, to look into the consequences and lor impact of the child marriage and suggest so lution s, The study used both qualitative and quantitative instruments to co llect the data. The qualitati ve data are co mplemented by the quantitative data or vise versa dur ing analysis. The prevalence 01' child marriage in Dembia WOI'eda is 30% .. Vari ous reasons are provided for concluding chilclillarriage. Among the many underl ying reas on~. the desi re La gain social prestige/recognition (38%), the need to conform to the social norm (33%), the desire for the establishment of bond between families of the bride and groom (21%), the desire to increase family members (33%) and to enjoy the wedd ing ceremony (39%) are the top ones. Child marriage has benet,ts to the parents of the spouses. The consequence and/or impact of ch ild marriage are diverse and negative, The fema le child suffers from incom patible physical, social and psychological problems. Enhancing the participation of female ch ildren and women at school and Kebele levels of the Woreda, the provision of child rights education, the provision of equal access to education and absence of gender discrimination are suggested as so lutions to eliminate the problem of ch ild marriage from the Woreda