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Shajahun Khatoon with the task force.jpg

"God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble." Psalm 46v1

Gender inequality is a crisis in India, blighting the prospects and health of half the population of an otherwise rapidly developing country. As well as providing quality healthcare, our partners at Duncan Hospital in Bihar have also implemented neighbourhood children’s parliaments to help children understand issues in their villages and advocate with adults for improvements, particularly in women’s and girls’ healthcare. These children’s parliaments are also supported and facilitated by local task force groups, who themselves work to improve gender equality in their local communities.

22.pngTask force groups (such as the Sundar Task Force pictured above) are able to keep vigilant and take immediate action to prevent girls from early marriage. Girls like Shajahun Khatoon (pictured right).

It was Shahjahun’s uncle, and guardian, who arranged for her to be married to a 70-year-old man with one eye, and who planned the wedding to take place in a faraway village, so he and other families could keep her property for themselves.

However, this plan thankfully came to light when one of the task force members visited the house where the wedding was to take place and reported to the group what was happening. Hearing this news, they rushed to the wedding place, took the girl away and bought her to a place of safety.

 

Giving thanks…

  • For the work of the children's parliaments and task forces and their commitment and determination towards gender equality.
  • For the vigilance and immediate response of the Sundar Task Force in rescuingShahjahunfrom child marriage.
  • For the opportunity to work with local partners, such as Duncan Hospital in India, to improve gender equality.

Please pray for…

  • Members of the neighbourhood children’s parliaments. That they will see improvements of gender equality within their local communities due to their work.
  • The local task force groups supporting the Neighbourhood Children’s Parliaments. That they would continue to work closely with the parliaments in achieving gender equality for women and girls.
  • ShahjahunKhatoon, that she will be able to move on from her ordeal and return to her studies.