NGO develops user toolkit on child marriage-related laws

Kasungu-based local non-governmental organisations (NGOs) Good Health organization (GHO) and Nkhamenya Mission have developed a user tool kit that provides comprehensive information and simplifies laws related to child marriages in Malawi.

Mbewe holds the toolkit

The user tool kit which has two versions Adult and Child Friendly is aimed at raising awareness on the existence of laws and policies which prohibit child marriages.

According to Project Officer for GHO Stella Mbewe the initiative dubbed Kulimbikitsa Ufulu ndi Moyo wa Anyamata (KUUWA) Project is aimed at empowering children and young people, especially girls, to live in a violence free environment with access to inclusive sexual reproductive health rights.

Mbewe said one of the problems in the communities is that despite having the numerous laws and policies on child protection people still lack information on these.

“The user toolkit is just an extract of relevant clauses in the acts and policies which will aid easy access to what the laws and policies say since not everyone can access the laws and even the constitution,” said Mbewe.

The user toolkit can be used by the children themselves, child protection officers, youth clubs, youth service providers, the media and other relevant officers.

Apart from being translated into Chichewa and Tumbuka, the user toolkit is also in Braille to carter for those who are visually impaired.

One of the young people in the district, Mercy Phiri who is in standard eight at Chankhanga Primary School, welcomed the user toolkit saying it will make it easier for young girls to know what laws are protecting them.

“The book is an important tool to have because sometimes children do not know that rights are being violated because they do not know what the laws say in the country,” said Phiri.

KUUWA is a five-year project, supported by Swedish International Development Agency (SIDA) through Plan International and implemented by GHO and Nkhamenya Mission Hospital in Kasungu.

The main focus of the project is on child protection and sexual reproductive health rights.

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