Oxfam Regional Director Nellie Nyangwa and Country Director Lingalireni Mihowa accompanied by Second Deputy Speaker Hon Aisha Adams and Hon Bertha Ndembele of Balaka West facilitate dialogue on rising teen pregnancies and child marriages in Balaka district.
Since March 2020, the Social Welfare Office has recorded 181 child marriages and 161 teen pregnancies. “Early pregnancy and child marriage are not a solution to #COVID19. It’s creating a problem on top of another problem.” – Ms Kumalele, Balaka Social Welfare Office.
MacDonald Simu from Balaka District Education Office encouraged youth, parents & chiefs to harness Government’s radio education programmes on MBC: “Not only will these provide activities for youth, but ongoing learning can support their return to school”.
Oxfam Regional Director stressed the importance of local leadership: “Discussions such as these help us find solutions. We’ve never had the challenge of COVID-19 before so there aren’t ready-made answers; local leadership is essential in times like these.”