Gompa, Nimba – According to several reports from around Liberia, girls are underrepresented in schools. This is due to some reasons, one of them being teenage pregnancy in early marriages. To combat the issue, the IRC conducted a training to sensitize adolescent girls on the issues regarding early marriages.
Farlee Yeekpeh, one of the beneficiaries of the training, told reporters following her graduation ceremony that she learned how venturing into an early marriage could lead to pregnancy by chance, and not by choice.
“I am calling on my friends not to put themselves in man business soon,” she said. “Let them prevent themselves from getting pregnant soon by using family planning or using a condom. I want to encourage my friends to go to school, and not to involve themselves into early marriage.”
The IRC initiative is of particular importance because even though modern education has slowed down the practice of early marriage, it’s still rampant in some parts of the country. For example, the Sande Society girl’s school, one of the only sources of education in the community, allegedly prepares girls to get married and become housewives at young ages.
Ferlee stated that there are no benefits in going to Sande School in these modern times.
“Stand firm on your foundation and embrace your future,” was the theme for the keynote speaker, Leona K. Mason from the Carter Center Program.
She cautioned the girls to stand up for who they are, especially after getting knowledge and education in a particular discipline that should serve as a foundation.
“We want to thank IRC, the government of Liberia, our parents and our mentors for allowing us the opportunity for building the foundation and full potential of our lives.” She said. “There are lots of storms you will face in life… but I want you to stand your ground with those achievements you have from your mentors – you must celebrate your achievements and your success.”
Featured photo courtesy of Adam Parr, USAID