The birth of a child brings joy and happiness to the world, but in Malawi the celebration varies based on gender. In Malawi, revealing the gender of a newborn child elicits different responses from the local village. If the born child is a boy, the village becomes noisy with ululations accompanied by joyful singing. If the child is a girl, the ululations are muted, not impressing at all. Sometimes families even divorce because of the misunderstandings. These unwarm welcome remarks mark the beginning of a life of hardships for a girl in Malawi.
When women rule: Malawi chief battles harms against girls
When women rule: Malawi chief battles harms against girls | UNFPA - United Nations Population Fund
He strides across the baked earth of a dried-out river bed, wearing a traditional robe and circular hat over a shirt and trousers. The area is predominantly Muslim and there is a small brick mosque among the houses, adorned with a white star and crescent on the minaret. A cockerel calls out from a straw enclosure behind one of the mud brick houses. He is determined to use his influence to improve the lives of adolescents in his community, by ensuring that they get an education. In his area, he has already ended over 30 child marriages and returned the affected children to school. To do this, for girls in particular, I am also trying to end all child marriages under the age of
What it Means to be a Girl in Malawi: Lessenia’s Story
Isaac Zatha, the headmaster of Chapita Primary School in the Malawian district of Salima, spent years watching his girl students disappear from class when they were married off or became pregnant. Boys also dropped out, but the trend was much more worrying for girls. In the school year, four girls became pregnant and left. The next year, five more girls dropped out.
Local organisations are helping girls speak out so communities can abandon child marriage and other harmful practices. Memory Banda beat the odds. In Malawi, five out of every 10 girls marry before the age of Her sister married aged 11, but Banda vowed to finish school. When girls in her village were subjected to sexual initiation, Banda organised literacy classes to teach them how to read.