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172 GIRLS RESCUED FROM CHILD MARRIAGES IN NKHATA-BAY

By Chisomo Kambandanga MANA

Girls Empowerment Network (GNET) has described a girl’s mentorship program it is implementing in Nkhatabay as successful, saying among others, it has helped withdraw girls from child marriages and bring them back to school.

Speaking on Saturday during a one-day program review meeting with mentors and the program`s focal persons, GNET Project Coordinator, Juliet Msosa said the girls have been re-enrolled in different secondary schools with support from spotlight initiative.

However, Msosa appealed to government for a continued support to the girls to see them completing their secondary education as Spotlight initiative is phasing out in June this year.

The program is being implemented in three phases in nine Traditional Authorities in Nkhata Bay and has so far trained 84 safe space mentors who facilitate discussions on a number of issues which affect girls in their daily lives.

One of the mentors from Kande, Traditional Authority (T/A) Fukamapili, Eunice Mphande said the program has also helped a lot of girls to speak out and receive required attention from various authorities.

Focal person for the mentorship program from GVH Thuli, T/A Fukamalaza, Fatima Banda said the program has helped reduce gender-based violence and child marriages in the district and has empowered gender-based violence survivors through survivors’ fund, among others.

Girls’ mentorship program is implemented by GNET with funding from Spotlight Initiative with the aim of eliminating gender based violence.

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