19th May 2017, Karachi
Oxfam and Indus Resource Centre (IRC) jointly launched a new project “Marriage: No Child’s Play” on May 19, 2017. The project was officially launched in Karachi, with the participation of special guests including, Ms. Shamim Mumtaz, Minister Social Welfare, Sindh; Mr. Saadat Ali from Netherlands Embassy; Ms. Atiya Dawood from WAF; Ms. Mehnaz Rahman, Regional Director, Aurat Foundation; Ms. Amna Abro, HEO, Health Department; Mr. Qadeer Baig, Director IRD; Dr. Amar Sindhu, Professor of Philosophy at University of Sindh; Mr. Sikandar Sohani from Aahang Pakistan; and Mr. Iqbal Detho.
Guests were jointly welcomed by Ms. Sadiqa Sallahudin, Executive Director, Indus Resource Centre and Mr. Wasim Durani, Programme Manager, Oxfam. Mr. Saleem Ahmed , Project Manager “Marriage: No Child’s Play” gave a brief presentation explaining the project, its theory of change, and its approach to achieve the goal of ending child marriages in Sindh.
The speakers discussed the issues such as girl child in rural Sindh, violence against women and child marriages, legal age of marriage, the child marriage restraint act and its implementation. In accordance with the theme, all of the speakers shared issues, challenges they have been facing, and their struggle for ending child marriages.
This project will be implemented in Larkana and Shikarpur districts of Sindh province. Covering eight Union Councils of both districts. The project has seven outcomes mainly focusing on life skill based education for in and out of school youth between ages of 11-18. It will also strengthen existing child and social protection systems, build capacity of duty bearers for report and referral mechanisms, provide economic opportunities for girls affected by or at risk of early marriages, create awareness among parents, communities, religious leaders, and other opinion makers about harmful practices and consequences of child marriage. The project has a participatory approach. It will be engaging and strengthening village level organizations, child protection committees, and youth groups – both male and female – to raise their voices for their rights.