First Lady Getrude Mutharika has urged young girls in the country to stay in school as it is the only ticket to end poverty in the country.
Mutharika made the remarks Thursday in Lilongwe during the official opening of National Girl’s Conferences under the theme ‘Be part of the change; let’s join hands to end child marriages’ at Bingu International Conventional Centre (BICC).
She said her passion is to see progressing of all girls across the country and that she has the burning desire to see girls in Malawi enrolling in school and completing their education so that a generation of economically empowered women is created.
“I want to emphasize that as your Goodwill Ambassador, I take my role seriously and I am very concerned with any issues that affect the girl child in our country.
“I am aware that some of you are being forced by your parents to drop out of school to get married, there are some of you who are walking long distances to school, and some of you have resorted to self-boarding which has exposed you to numerous challenges.
“So many of you are probably worried about where your fees will come from; I am aware of all these problems,” said Mutharika
She said it is with that reason that Beautify Malawi (BEAM) Trust in conjunction with its partners such as Plan International have joined forces to alleviate some of these challenges.
Mutharika said BEAM has embarked on a project to construct girl’s hostels in the Community Day Secondary Schools and that the project is underway in a number of districts across the country.
“At BEAM we are also providing bursaries to some needy girls in various schools including bring back to school girls who dropped out due to early pregnancies or marriages.
“ I have this motivation within me to see to it that girls do not lose their potential in life because of long distances to school, early marriages and early pregnancies,” she explained.
Mervis Kamanga, Youth Advocator said youth participation gives young people courage and also makes them feel important whenever they are participating in such activities.
“I am very proud to be part of the event organized by young people, it shows that we are also important and we can contribute in making decisions,” she said.
Speaking earlier, Plan Malawi International Country Director, Lilly Omondi said ending marriage is not only being implemented in Malawi; it is a global problem, millions of girls all over the world are marrying before the age of 18.
She said in Malawi women are more than men as well as Kenya and that most of them are not educated so it is important to end child marriages.
Omondi also encouraged the boy child to take a role on the issue of ending child marriages saying the country cannot achieve child marriages if boys are left out.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :