[Serbia] Whether and what we get, and what we lose by entering into a child marriage

07 Jun 2018
Praxis Serbia

In May 2018, Praxis held four workshops with more than eighty girls from seventh and eighth grade on the topic of prevention and elimination of children, early and forced marriages and early dropouts of Roma pupils from the education system. Workshops were held in elementary schools "Jovan Cvijić" in Kostolac, "Boško Palkovljević Pinki" and "Sutjeska" in Belgrade and elementary school "Aleksandar Stojanović - Leso" in Novi Pazar, as part of the activities implemented under the project "Legal Assistance to Persons at Risk of Statelessness" funded by the UNHCR.

The workshops are a continuation of last year's activities aimed at preventing and eliminating this harmful practice, during which, through the discussion with school children on the reasons for leaving school, the marital roles of men and women, and the causes and consequences of this phenomenon we have jointly confirmed the presence of children, early and forced marriages. In addition to these workshops, Praxis will hold eight more workshops with children from the fifth and sixth grade in 2018. on the topic "We asked the children: Why do some children leave school, what are the marital obligations and why to say STOP to children's marriages".

Whether and what we get, and what we lose by entering into a child marriage is the issue we have dealt with during this year's workshop. At the very beginning of the workshop, the girls had the opportunity to look at UNICEF's movie "A storybook wedding - except for one thing", which shows the wedding of a girl of 11 and a man of 35 years. During the discussion that followed, the girls tried to imagine what the girl's day after the wedding looked like. In the second part of the workshop, the girls tried to list what is gained and what was lost in the children's marriage. 

At the very end, the girls had the opportunity to see the film "I'm a Roma woman", which presents the testimonies of Roma women who were educated and realized their goal in life. The film inspired them all and strengthened it once more in order to continue their education.

The workshops significantly contributed to the empowerment of girls to continue their education and to resist child marriages.

This project is funded by: