Day 8: One in five girls is married before she is 18

Zonta International is committed to ending child marriage.

Globally, 21% of girls are married before they turn 18, robbing them of their childhood.

Each year, another 12 million girls under the age of 18 are married around the world.

Child marriage is globally recognized as a harmful practice and a human rights violation. However, despite laws against it, the practice remains widespread and can be found in cultures, religions, ethnicities and countries around the world.

Ending child marriage requires addressing, over a period of time, the complex sociocultural and structural factors underpinning the practice.

As a result, the Global Programme to End Child Marriage was designed to address the issue over a 15-year period from 2015 through 2030.

During this time, the priority remains on engaging adolescent girls as key agents of change in the following 12 countries with high prevalence of child marriage: Bangladesh, Burkina Faso, Ethiopia, Ghana, India, Mozambique, Nepal, Niger, Sierra Leone, Uganda, Yemen and Zambia.