Baseline study to estimate the number of child marriages in South Asia 2014-2017

A summary report

Fatema,15, sits on the bed at her home in Khulna on 7 April 2014. Fatema was saved from being married a few weeks ago. The local child protection committee members stopped the marriage with the help of law enforcement agencies.  One afternoon, Fatema discovered her mother intended to marry her off and that a registrar was due to come to her house that very evening. She was devastated and ran away to a friend’s house within the community. Chondra (one of the members of the community based child protection co


In the face of urgent demand for an up-to-date baseline for child marriage programming and in the absence of reliable annual data on child marriage, this study attempted to develop a methodology that can provide an interim solution to the problem of child marriage measurement. The study was able to reconstruct a baseline for the ROSA ROMP period and was able to suggest a more suitable target for the headline result.

The study concluded that in 2014, 5,386,445 children (4,733,070 girls and 653,375 boys) were in marriage. It also concluded that if the pattern continues and programmes are active over 2014 - 2017 period, 416,300 child marriage among girls will be averted.

UNICEF South Asia
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