Gender Equality

Fighting Child Marriage in Bangladesh

By Karen Boeker (AWC Denmark)

CSW 63 was an inspiring and encouraging experience – again. It started on Sunday, March 10 with the NGO Forum's Consultation Day, which was for me the perfect start into the week.

One of the events at CSW63 was a call to join the fight against child marriage in Bangladesh. It is a movement based on a simple protest signal. Sean Southy, President of PCI media, entered the stage clapping his hands three times, then pausing and doing it again: clap, clap, clap – clap, clap, clap – …

And of course, within seconds he wasn’t alone in his clapping anymore.

Then he told the story of how media clips and a short “daily soap” (very popular!) helped to raise awareness about child marriage. It was impressive to listen to him and watch one of the clips:

It shows how easy it is to express your opinion in a non-violent and safe way. Speaking up might cause problems for you or your family and could get you in trouble in some countries or environments. But having a signal means many people can join so easily that the whole community can join in resistance against child marriage. And that’s a good response to push back the push back (I’m sure you heard about that by now) and take a stand for the rights of women and girls.

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