Active role of child marriage prevention committees stressed02 October 2022
City Desk :
Activation and full-length functioning of all the district, upazila and union level child marriage prevention committees has become crucial to free the society from the curse of child marriage.
The observation came at a consultation on prevention of child marriage by many of the stakeholders held at the office conference hall of Deputy Commissioner (DC) in Rajshahi.
Association for Community Development (ACD), a rights-based development entity, hosted the meeting under its project titled "Ending Child Marriage through Adolescents Voice and Stakeholders Responsiveness" supported by UNICEF.
Prof Prodip Kumar Pandey from the Department of Mass Communication and Journalism in Rajshahi University portrayed "A study on COVID-19 and its impact on the lives of adolescents: focus on child marriage" during his keynote paper presentation.
With Additional District Magistrate Sabiha Sultana in the chair, the meeting was addressed, among others, by Deputy Director of Department of Youth Development Golam Mahbub, Deputy Director of Department of Family Planning Dr Kustary Amina Queen, District Education Officer Nasir Uddin, District Children Affairs Officer Monzur Quader and Editor of Daily Sonar Desh Akbarul Hassan Millat.
ACD Director Programme Sharmin Subrina welcomed the participants.
The speakers laid emphasis on finding out the root causes of child marriage side by side with solving those on priority basis.
Apart from this, service hours of various public helpline numbers need to be enhanced to get desired yield in this sector, they added.
The speakers unanimously viewed that integrated efforts of both senior and junior citizens can be the best way of ending child marriage for the sake of protecting maternal and neonatal health everywhere in society.
Simultaneously, all the government and non-government organizations concerned and the community as a whole should come forward and work together to combat child marriage and child pregnancy as it's the precondition for improvement of child and maternal health.
In her remarks, Sabiha Sultana said the present government under the dynamic and visionary leadership of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has been implementing diversified programmes to free the society from child marriage.
Terming child marriage as gross violation of human rights he also said it is vital to increase awareness regarding the negative impacts of child marriage with the help of the mass media.
More coordination is necessary among various stakeholders at upazila, district and national levels.
Besides, research institutions and civil society organizations should also highlight the bad impacts of child marriage through regular research.