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Google+ Hangout with Mary Robinson and child marriage activists

Why is child marriage the focus of the International Day of the Girl? How can we end this harmful practice that affects millions of girls every year? How can advocates and activists – especially young people all around the world – take a stand against child marriage?

On 11 October Mary Robinson, Christy Turlington Burns, experts and activists answered your questions and discussed child marriage in a live online conversation.

Watch the Google + Hangout

To mark the first International Day of the Girl on Thursday 11 October, the global Girls Not Brides partnership hosted a discussion on child marriage – the official theme of the day.

Mary Robinson took part in this online Google+ Hangout, with the video streamed live from The Elders’ website, Facebook page and Twitter. She was joined by Christy Turlington Burns of Every Mother Counts and several child marriage experts and activists from around the world to talk about the challenges of addressing this harmful traditional practice – and to point to some of the amazing work that is already being done to support families and communities in providing alternatives to early marriage.

Watch the video, and find out what can be done to help millions of girls avoid early marriage and fulfil their potential.

More information about the participants

Mary RobinsonMary Robinson was the first woman President of Ireland and is a former United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights. She is also a member of The Elders, a group of independent leaders using their collective experience and influence for peace, justice and human rights worldwide. In 2011 The Elders founded Girls Not Brides: The Global Partnership to End Child Marriage. Mary Robinson and her fellow Elders have since visited Ethiopia and India to meet adolescent girls and boys determined to end child marriage.

Christy Turlington BurnsWith nearly thirty years at the forefront of the fashion industry, having graced every magazine cover from Vogue to Time, Christy Turlington Burns has established a diverse career as a model, writer, entrepreneur, spokesperson, advocate, and filmmaker. In 2010, she completed and debuted her documentary film, NO WOMAN, NO CRY, about the global state of maternal health. Concurrent with the debut of her documentary, Christy launched Every Mother Counts, an action and mobilisation campaign designed to educate and support maternal, newborn and child health. Photo: Every Mother Counts.

Anju MalhotraDr Anju Malhotra is Principal Adviser, Gender and Rights, at UNICEF where her work helps children from diverse backgrounds overcome overcome the barriers to well-being and rights presented by gender discrimination and human rights violations. Her extensive research portfolio focuses on issues such as child marriage, girls’ education, innovation and women’s empowerment, and adolescent transition to adulthood, among others. Prior to this, Dr Malhotra worked for the International Center for Research on Women (ICRW) working to maximise the potential of adolescent girls and developing viable frameworks and metrics for measuring women’s and girls’ empowerment. She is currently serving as a member of the Girls Not Brides Advisory Committee.

Muhammad Shahzad KhanMuhammad Shahzad Khan, 27, hails from a village in Bahawalpur, Pakistan. When he was 12 years old, village elders told his father to marry his teenage sister to a 50-year-old man. Muhammad began a hunger strike to protest the marriage and his family soon joined him. The wedding was called off but the family had to leave the village and settle in Lahore. He has since set up Chanan Development Association, a non-profit organisation aimed at empowering young people in Pakistan. The Friends of UNFPA, an organisation that mobilises funds and action for the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), recognised Shahzad’s important contributions in promoting women’s and youth rights by honouring him with the 2012 Award for the Health and Dignity of Women and Girls in a ceremony in New York on Thursday.

On the Web
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THIS FRIDAY we're also teaming up with @onegirlorg to host the screening of "Girl Rising" http://t.co/N8wf4Mty… #DayoftheGirl
Oct. 11 is the #DayOfTheGirl Honor a woman who has impacted your life by tweeting about her with tags #standup4girls and #dayofthegirl
Here's a great way to let people know about International #DayoftheGirl Child - send them an e-postcard: http://t.co/XXRktjU8… @Canada_swc
U.N.'s 2nd annual International Day of the Girl approaching http://t.co/x3ZExOxs… #idg2013 #dayofthegirl
70% of the world's poor is made up of #women and #girls. It doesn't have to be this way. #investingirls #education #dayofthegirl #endpoverty
Congratulations to all who support @planglobal, 1.5 million hands raised for girls' education! http://t.co/GY1B6kvI… #IDG2013 #dayofthegirl
“On #dayofthegirl, 33m girls are missing out on their right to education" http://t.co/0TmEtgAr…
Do you have the ROARing spirit? Join @katyperry to support all girls' right to education! WATCH: http://t.co/7MzDzL5O… #dayofthegirl
New Factsheet on New Launch of Public& Private Initiatives To Raise the Status of Girls from @StateDept http://t.co/h5F8xb8t… #DayoftheGirl
RT @warisara: Here are some pics of iconic monuments turned pink for the launch of #bcimagirl #dayofthegirl on #BBC Newsround http://t.c ...
The Forgotten Girls @independent Support the Fight Against Forced Marriage @PlanUK International #DayoftheGirl http://t.co/8RGP0vfY…
"Development matters most to girls and women" says Justine Greening on #DayoftheGirl: http://t.co/wIYwIh2Q… #endchildmarriage @DFID_UK
On October 11th, we are celebrating #DayoftheGirl ! Find out why #DayoftheGirl was created http://t.co/Mf2kOqvz…
Give girls a chance to postpone motherhood until they are women #endchildmarriage http://t.co/Ydljae77… @ICRW #DayoftheGirl @10x10act
Of the world's 130 million out-of-school youth, 70% are girls. Oct 11 is the #DayoftheGirl - http://t.co/Dag92UHs…
Want to learn more about the first #dayofthegirl? Read the UN General Assembly Resolution here! http://t.co/4A0iitei…
RT @melindagates: Today is the first #DayoftheGirl, and it's about time. We see more urgent reasons every day. Now, anyone can help: htt ...
International Day of the Girl (11 Oct) - Resources http://t.co/rZ0lI3LA… #dayofthegirl
2500 girls become #childbrides every single day http://t.co/4Lfu8l6G… Help us spread the word #endchildmarriage @CARE #DayoftheGirl
Did you know 41% of women aged 20-49 today were married before 18? http://t.co/7sszJr1F… On #DayoftheGirl let's act to #endchildmarriage
Oct 11 is #dayofthegirl: + girls' rights and end #gender bias. PRB says #FP and #GenderEquality go hand-in-hand: http://t.co/SkTsS2rd…
Raise your hands for #dayofthegirl supporting girls' right to a quality education http://t.co/bem3Vl6Q…
How are you celebrating International #DayoftheGirl? Here's a list of ways YOU can get involved! http://t.co/W0v4RoOt…
@HungerProject "When women are supported and empowered, all of society benefits." #DayoftheGirl http://t.co/2hVFqwgc…
Why I am so delighted to be involved in first ever International Day of the girl --> Because I'm a girl http://t.co/dvgkyWMC… #dayofthegirl
Investing in girls unleashes their incredible potential! Such a great cause. http://t.co/PwiwahfG… #DayOfTheGirl

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