Eight-year-old brides, Tehani and Ghada, begin preparations for a family meal at their home outside Hajjah, Yemen. Child marriage has long been an issue in Yemen, one of the few countries in the region without a legal minimum age of marriage. Attempts to set 18 as the minimum marrying age collapsed with the outbreak of the conflict in 2015 and it is estimated that, now, child marriage rates could be much higher. A UNFPA-INTERSOS assessment, which interviewed over 250 community members, local leaders and survivors of child marriage for insight into how families are coping with the conflict, stated that most participants “were of the opinion that child marriage has increased in their community. They all stated that the conflict pushed the practice,” according to the assessment’s findings. While more comprehensive assessments are difficult to do in conflict situations, the report also suggests that girls are being married off even younger. Of the child marriage survivors interviewed in the northern part of the country, 72 per cent were married between ages 13 and 15. Of those in the south, 62 per cent were married before age 16.
This image is part of a 175-image exhibition titled “Too Young to Wed,” which is the inaugural exhibition at the new L’Arche du Photojournalisme, atop at the prestigious Grand Arche de la Defense in Puteaux, Paris. Many of the images were made #onassignment for @natgeo, including this one. The show, which opened June 1 and runs through Sept. 24, is complete with educational information about the dangers of #childmarriage and the efforts underway around the world to end the practice, which occurs in more than 50 countries spanning many cultures and religions. It also includes information about our nonprofit organization of the same name, @TooYoungToWed, which seeks to protect girls' rights and #endchildmarriage. @letoitdelagrandearche #girls #child #girlseducation #conflict #color