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Access to education, the right to make choices about your own body – these are things many of us take for granted. But the reality for many women and young girls in developing countries is very different.
Denied rights to some very basic choices – such as how many children to have and when, whether to stay in school, and how to participate in their country’s economy.
For some, this is about culture, custom, economics or just denial of basic human rights. For others it is as simple, yet life changing, as not having access to modern contraceptive methods.
New legislation in Bangladesh which will allow girls under the age of 18 to be married-off legally in “special circumstances” is a step backwards for young woman, the International Planned Parenthood Federation has warned.
The Child Marriage restraint Bill 2017 gives parents or guardians the ability to seek a court order for children to be married-off in their “best interests.”
Currently, it is illegal for girls under 18 or men under 21 to marry in Bangladesh, although the law is widely flouted.
The kidnapping of more than 200 girls in Nigeria has been condemned by most people and organizations and we urge their release. This event represents not just an assault on the girls and their families but also the way women are treated in locations around the globe, the International Planned Parenthood Association (IPPF) said.
“Unless we empower women and girls, expand their educational opportunities, and work every day for their rights then they will continue to be singled out simply on the grounds of gender,” said IPPF’s President Naomi Seboni.
This issue from the Learning from innovation series brings together lessons from three projects that successfully addressed factors which make a particular group of young people vulnerable in the local context. Implemented in Bangladesh, Tunisia and Ethiopia, each project developed strategies to empower young people and their communities to better protect the sexual and reproductive health of young people and enable them to make choices to improve their lives.
IPPF has always produced a substantial range of printed publications to support and report on its work. But recently, the organization has begun to make more vigorous use of film and video.
Today, IPPF’s Girls Decide mini-film series won a prestigious Charities and Social Enterprise Sector Award at the IVCA Clarion Awards in London.