Odisha: District Administration seeks support from Traditional leaders to combat child Marriage in Ganjam

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Chhatrapur: An Orientation Workshop was conducted for Traditional leaders of Ganjam district jointly by District Administration, Ganjam, UNICEF and Action Aid to combat child marriage in the district at Old Conference Hall, Chatrapur. In this workshop the traditional leaders from 22 Blocks of Ganjam District participated. 60 leaders from 15 different Caste group people including tribal communities and traditional leaders joined in the workshop. District Social Welfare Officer Smt Manorama Reddy, District Social Security Officer Sri Subhranshu Maharana, ISRD Director Sri Sudhir Sabat, CWC member Sri Harihar Padhy and DCPU Councillor Sri Sujit Behera joined and appealed the traditional leaders not to organise any child marriage in their locality. They also seek support from the leaders to take necessary steps at their castes and appealed for involvement of everyone to spread the massage to make Ganjam a Child Marriage Free district.
Child marriage leads to Infant Mortality, Maternal Mortality, Malnutrition and economically weak. To address the child marriage issues in district the State government, Ganjam District Administration, Action Aid and UNICEF jointly focused on different aspects like every children will be in the school and quality learning, health, malnutrition, child protection mechanisms and skill development mechanisms and a District Work Plan made for the District on 9th August 2019 with consultation of all line departments.
Every child has the potentiality to lead the nation, he or she may become a scientist, teacher or an administrator but due to child marriage it is not resulting so every community leaders should think about the next generation of their own community. They should dream about their community children.
As a part of the District Work Plan District Administration organised this workshop to involve the caste or traditional leaders. it is focused not to organise any marriage ceremony while the girl is below 18 years and boy is below 21 years age. They should check the age of the person when a marriage is going to be solemnised they should collect information from the concerned Angan Wadi Worker. When a marriage is going to be happened they should convince the parents not to organise the marriage ceremony and they should inform Childline, Police, Angan Wadi Worker, ICDS Supervisors and CDPOs-cum- child Marriage Prohibition Officers and District Child Protection Officer.
Debabrat Mahunt, District Consultant, Action Aid shared the purpose of this workshop and described about the child protection mechanisms available for the children in the district. He also narrated different schemes available for the children. The workshop was ended with the vote of thanks from Bharati Behera District Mission Shakti Coordinator.

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