Success Story: The Project of Combating Early Marriage.
In cooperation with Equality Now in Lebanon, the Association of the Egyptian Female Lawyers (AEFL) started the implementation of the project "Social Initiative to Combat Early Marriage", which aims at raising social awareness in regard to the danger of early marriage.
Moreover, the project wants to raise the legal awareness in regard to the prevention of young girls’ marriage, build the capacities in this field of ten NGOs, and raise awareness of 200 families regarding women’s rights and social and legal impacts of early marriage. The project also involves the training of 20 local facilitators on issues of early marriage and its impacts, and the launch of a campaign on social media. The project is implemented in Al Hawamdya and Al Waraq areas in Giza.
The partners of the project are CSOs, the National Council for Women, the parliament and senate. In the context of the project, AEFL has implemented a number of activities to achieve the expected objectives, among which we can list:
- Raise awareness sessions for families, women and girls in regard to legal, health and psychological risks of early marriage. These sessions targeted 200 families and 1000 women and girls.
- Launch a page on social media entitled "Against Girls Marriage" to raise awareness on the risks of girls’ marriage for 6000 persons.
- Form an alliance composed by 20 NGOs who have the capacity to raise social awareness against this phenomenon.
- Prepare a draft law including 11 articles.
- Hold roundtable for experts to discuss the draft law of criminalizing child marriage. 22 experts participated in this roundtable including members of the parliament and senate in addition to the head of marriage officials, representative of the National Council for Childhood and Motherhood, representatives of political parties, representatives of NGOs concerned with women and child’s rights and number of media personnel and public figures. By the end of this roundtable some of the members of the parliament announced their adoption of the draft law and submitted it to the parliament to be discussed.
In addition, in one of his speeches, the Egyptian president pointed out to the risk of this phenomenon and called for combining efforts to combat it. Furthermore, media means have widely covered the project activities.
The Association of the Egyptian Female Lawyers launched the campaign # 1000 جمعية to call the president and the Egyptian parliamentarians to criminalize girls’ marriage. The campaign statement was signed by more than 350 NGOs.
This platform is part of the Axis 1 "Strengthening the capacities of equality actors" of the Priority Solidarity Fund "Women for the future in the Mediterranean" funded by the French Ministry of Europe and Foreign Affairs and led by the European Institute of the Mediterranean, in the framework of the project “Developing Women's Empowerment” labelled by the Union for the Mediterranean.