Half of youth in Muong Cha marries before 18
Two years ago, Vang Thi Chia, a then 15-year old girl from an ethnic minority in Dien Bien province, still went to Muong Cha High School, as did most boys and girls in her village. She fell in love with a classmate and got pregnant because she had learned nothing about safe sex. Not form her friends, nor her parents or her teachers. Her parents gave her permission to marry her boyfriend. A tough decision, because it ment she had to quit school.
Now Chia is a 17 year old young mother, filling her days with taking care of her child and working their land. She tries to be a good wife for her (very young) husband so that he can finish school. But she finds it hard and would like to join her friends and go to school with them.
In Vietnam according to the Law on Marriage and Family, women should be at least 18 and men at least 20 years old before being allowed to marry. But law and daily live are two different things. Cultural values and traditions play an important role in the problem of child marriages. Together with a lack of knowledge on Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights (SRHR) and poor acces to health and social services and to schooling, this leads to marriages at an early age, poverty, school drop out, child neglect, unemployement and especially health problems. These girls are fysically and emotionally not yet ready to become a wife and a mother.
Together we can help these girls!
With € 32.500 we can expand the already started SRHR-programme (training of teachers and the development of a state of the art teaching method) to other schools in other villages in Dien Bien province, to reach much more youth. Together we can help prevent child marriages and teenage pregnancies and thus, prevent school drop out.
These youth need your support, so join our action and donate!
On behalf of the youth of Bien Bien, thank you!