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The President   Maka Chichua Awards Winners of the Project "Early Marriage Prevention in Kvemo Kartli"

Maka Chichua Awards Winners of the Project "Early Marriage Prevention in Kvemo Kartli"

The First Lady of Georgia, Ms. Maka Chichua has awarded winners of the project “Early Marriage Prevention in Kvemo Kartli”. The project has been financed by the Presidential Reserve Fund.
The project, carried out with support of the Union “Sapari”, Presidential Reserve Fund, United Nations Populations Fund (UNFPA) Georgia, and Embassy of Netherlands has been summarized today at the Presidential Palace. The project aimed at raising awareness of Kvemo Kartli population on disadvantages of early marriage.
As part of the project, ethnically Azeri young people have held meetings with high school students of 90 Kvemo Kartli schools.
The meetings focused on disadvantages of early marriage, legislative acts, and existing national referral mechanism. Informational brochures and thematic comics have been distributed to the students.
The First Lady has spoken about the negative consequences of early marriage and highlighted methods of its prevention. As she pointed out, the Presidential Palace is a place where people are always ready to protect women’s rights and stop early marriage. The President of Georgia has been actively involved in discussing and resolving this problem. He announced 2015 as the year of women to attract public attention to this problem and mobilize the society.
The First Lady believes that this problem is impossible to solve without active involvement of the society. Each person is born free; everyone has the right to decide how to plan own life and receive education.
According to the Head of “Sapari”, Ms. Baia Pataraia, the students have taken part in essay, drawing, and photo contests.
The Head of UNFPA, Ms. Lela Bakradze has also participated in the awards ceremony and discussed importance of cooperation among the state, society, and non-governmental organizations to solve this problem. As she has stated, this cooperation has contributed to the success of the project.
According to the project implementers, child and early marriage is still a widespread negative practice in Georgia. It leads to detrimental problems, especially for young women, often invokes their social and legal isolation, and prevents them from receiving proper education.
Pregnancy and childbirth at the age of adolescence risk maternal and fetal health. Causes of child and early marriage are complex and, therefore, to improve the situation, require active involvement in terms of policy and legislation, as well as at the level of communities and adolescents.
The meeting has also been attended by the Head of Administration of the President Mr. Giorgi Abashishvili, Advisor to the President in Ethnic Minority Issues Ms. Sophio Shamanidi and representatives of UNFPA and Embassy of Netherlands.