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teenage pregnancy!

When i saw the description for this week's assignment my mind wondered in different directions.In Nigeria there are so many issues that affect young girls from accessing education.The greatest challenge girls face in my community is "teenage pregnancy"! and the mindset given to the girl-child.
i interviewed a lady that runs an an NGO for widows and the girl child and she had a wonderful enlightening story to tell me.
She said that in her state (Enugu) in eastern Nigeria,girls who get themselves pregnant at a tender age are regarded as 'devalued goods".They are either given out to a fellow woman to marry or an old man old enough to be their grandfather!At that point that puts an end to their educational pursuit and dreams of marriage to a man of their choice.
The impact this creates is emotional trauma in losing their youth and being made out as an outcast amongst family and friends.their education is thus gone forever!.The society pays for it as children are born out of horrible frustrating issues and the cycle just continues.
these issues are responsible.....poverty;some of these girls very ignorant about sexual education with no parental guidance...a lot are taken advantage of by men;the educational level of their mothers and the women in these communities is very low to properly give adequate knowledge transfer to these young girls.some of the older women believe that girls as compared to boys are strictly made for the kitchen and there seems no reason to invest in them.
I live and stay in the City so this was actually news to me! i asked her how this issues could be tackled and first she replied that..."her passion in this is the fact that it continues to be a viscous cycle from generation to generation because no one has effectively sensitized and broken the norm ".she added further that the only solution in stopping this is SENSITIZATION. Helping the older women to see that they play and share a huge responsibility in how their wards eventually turn out. She also mentioned Advocacy visits; talks on gender equality.
One thing is certain about this lady....she has a deep passion to help her community to change their mind set so that she can at least save some from this crippling menace and hopefully give girls better life then others. her dream seems tall but i know that with some help things would begin to change.She has started advocacy but her major challenge is funding to move around this communities and create deep roots of sensitization the people.
A Big thanx to world pulse for giving me the push to think of interviewing this lady and finding out first hand info on what these young girls could have best avoided (i would never have known!). Am glad to be her voice and a million others that are saying that girls need to be in school and need to avoid being pregnant and if they do.....their care givers shouldn't land them a life sentence!

This story was written for World Pulse’s Girls Transform the World Digital Action Campaign.

World Pulse believes that women's stories, recommendations, and collective rising leadership can—and will—bring girls greater access to education which will transform their lives, their families, and communities. The Girls Transform Campaign elicits insightful content from young women on the ground, strengthens their confidence as women, and ensures that influencers and powerful institutions hear their stories.
Learn more »

Comments

Aminah's picture

This cycle needs to be broken.

"The society pays for it as children are born out of horrible frustrating issues and the cycle just continues."

That captures the essence of the hardship women go through. This cycle needs to be broken.
And it is great that you are playing a role in helping out people who need help.

Keep up the good work

Aminah

Salaam
Aminah

oremicraft's picture

thk you

thank you for ur reply and really sorry for the late response.Yes,the cycle needs to be broken.i hope and pray that my friend finds and gets the funding she requires to make a positive change!

vera

Stacey Rozen's picture

Innocent babies

It's so sad that innocent babies are being born into this way of thinking and the consequences. The young moms and their babies deserve a 'life sentence' in a community that cares not judgement and exile. You are bringing awareness, Oremicraft. Keep telling this story so more learn through it.

Creatively,
Stacey

Riya's picture

Hello Oremicraft, Thank you

Hello Oremicraft,

Thank you for sharing such an important aspect of teenage pregnancy. The way women themselves can perpetuate discrimination against each other is important to look at. The lady you mentioned in your post is doing a great job. I think it is equally if not more important to teach fathers/men about the roles they play in discrimination against women. Your post really highlights the importance of talking to others about issue and ideas to expand our knowledge of what is happening to women in our own backyards and around the world.

Best,

Riya

ayodele emefe's picture

Hello

Hello Oremicraft,

Thank you for sharing this story with us.

I am a Nigerian and I find the story very intriguing. Being in the western part of Nigeria, Lagos to be precise, a lot of things happen in the rural communities that we are not aware of. For instance in the Northern part of Nigeria, a lot of under-aged girls are given out in marriages to men old enough to be their great grand father.

With medium such as world pulse, a lot of issues concerning girls and women can be brought to the notice of people and organizations so that solutions can be sought. It cannot be done by one person, so it needs the collective efforts of you and I to achieve the desired results.

Well done.

Cheers,

Ayodele

"You are a champion and a hero. Do not think yourself any less"

Lea's picture

Thank you!

Thank you, Oremicraft, for describing the tragic fate of many young girls who are perceived as "devalued goods" once it's discovered that they are pregnant. Why is it that women have to be punished for something they are more often than not victims. Why must these young girls as a result be forced to marry to preserve their honor?
It's heartbreaking to read about so much of that potential being lost. So many who are don't have access to an education, feel that they don't have a choice. They are forced to accept whatever is imposed on them.
I agree that the solution to breaking this unending cycle is through awareness and empowerment. Once the young girls see what options they have available to them, they will hopefully demand more rights and to be treated more equally. Role models and mentors are needed to encourage us to make a change!

oremicraft's picture

thank you too!

i totally agree with you....its a heartfelt story......the challenge the lady has as she said is that she needs funding to go around to create this awareness.These practices have being in the system and psychic of the people for too long...it will take an equally long time to change their minds again.
just in case you know any organisation that might be willing to sponsor or aid this laudable cause feel free to send me their details.
Am the voice speaking for that lady and hoping to change another generation. :)

Oremicraft

vera

Lea's picture

Dear Oremicraft, You are

Dear Oremicraft,

You are definitely making a difference! Just by sharing the woman's story, you are spreading the word and showing your desire for change!
In terms of knowing any organizations that would support your cause, I can't think of any right now. What you can do is post in the "Resource Exchange" under Funding and mention that you are looking for support/funding.
If I happen to know of anything, I'll let you know.
Best of luck!!!!

oremicraft's picture

thx dear!

thx a bunch!

vera

Lea's picture

Useful link

Hi Oremicraft,

I think I found something that might be of interest to you in looking for funding for your project.
Here is a website that is used for projects that need funding:
http://www.kickstarter.com/start
You present your project, explain it, and then have people donate/fund it. Perhaps it could be of help to you.
Good luck!
Lea

oremicraft's picture

thx dear!

thx a real bunch......will keep u posted on the outcome

vera

Lea's picture

Sure! I just realized though

Sure! I just realized though that only US and UK citizens can apply :( Perhaps, you know of someone in either country who would be willing to set up an account for you. Also, I looked for projects related to education, but couldn't find any on their website. It's the only one I know so far and it was recommended to me. If I hear of anything else, I'll send you the info.

oremicraft's picture

thx dear!

dis seems to be the same site u sent the last time u said i have to be in the UK or the US to access this route.....thanx anyways ,am grateful! *hugs*

vera

oremicraft's picture

hi!

hiya!
how have u bin?
pity we were not chosen for the next round...its all good!
At least am really glad i met u and a few others.Let me know if theres any opening to teach craft where u are and empower the less privileged.
am currently engaging my talents and creativity in teaching craft to kids and teenagers.
once again thx for the support
Vera Akpan
(OREMICRAFT)

vera

Lea's picture

Oh sorry. I was referring to

Oh sorry. I was referring to the same site...I apologize if that wasn't clear. I'll let you know if I hear of anything. Take care!

jacquesato's picture

Dear Oremicraft: Teen

Dear Oremicraft:
Teen pregnancy is a heavy issue here in the United States as well. I live in NY and everyday, when I take the subway, I read one of these ads:

http://www.nyc.gov/html/hra/html/programs/teen_pregnancy_campaign.shtml

Young women must have access to reproductive and legal rights, they must learn about their own bodies and love them, they must be encouraged to pursue an education.

We, women all over the world, are exactly on the same boat.
Regards,
Jacqueline

Jacqueline

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