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Combating early marriage through girls’ empowerment in West Africa from 2016 to 2019

Action Research Project: “Combating early marriage through girls’ empowerment in West Africa

Financial partner: International Development Research Centre (IDRC)

Total cost :1 096 500 $ CAD

Duration: 3 years

Countries: Mali, Niger, Togo.

Objective: To contribute to the reduction of early marriage through the generation of new knowledge and sustainable alternatives and the promotion of the wide use of this new knowledge on early marriage in West Africa.


  • A Baseline Study in the three (3) countries: Mali, Niger, Togo;ans One (1) comparative consolidated report available
  • 260 girls and 100 boys trained as actors of change in the fight against early marriage in 3 countries;
  • At the end of the project 237 girls and 90 boys trained; remained motivated;
  • Three (03) training modules (Vol I) developed at national level in Niger, Mali and Togo are available and One (01) sub-regional training module (Vol II), available
  • Three (03) national policy briefs and one (01) sub-regional policy brief entitled « CHILD MARRIAGE in Mali, Niger and Togo: To Get off the Beaten Track to a Better Act » prepared for the targeted decision makers.
  • 30,558 people, including 8,182 young girls, 8,325 women, 7,026 young boys and 7,025 approximately affected by the outreach activities
  • Twenty-two (22) cases of early marriage in Niger, fifteen (15) cases in Mali and seven (7) in Togo were denounced and treated.
  • 90 boys trained have changed their mentality towards early marriage and have committed themselves alongside young girls against the practice.
  • Advocacy action by young people in Niger, with neighbourhood chiefs on the need to act to contribute to the reduction of early marriages, violence against women, prostitution, fistula
  • In Mali, an elected representative made a commitment to include the issue of early marriage in the action plan of her municipality
  • 90 traditional and religious leaders participated in the national forums and made commitments to fight effectively against the phenomenon.
  • Panels organised at African Union meetings
  • The influence in January 2019 of the regional (ECOWAS) child policy and its strategic action plan (2019-2030), and the regional roadmap for the prevention and response to child marriage.
  • Early marriage in Mali, Niger, and Togo : data from studies in local communities developed by IRDC


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WILDAF Newsletter N° 91 juillet 202 2

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Combating early marriage through girls’ empowerment in West Africa from 2016 to 2019

WiLDAF, Sub Regional Office for West Africa was established in April 1997. It is part of a pan African women’s rights network established in 1990, initially based in Harare, but now based in Lomé, Togo. It dedicated to promoting and strengthening strategies which link law and development to increase women’s participation and influence at the community, national and international levels.

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