Tackling Early Marriage in Senegal: Understanding drivers and the Collaborative Approaches of Senegal’s Ministry of Education in addressing Early Marriage Challenges

Health and Wellbeing

  • May 2024
  • Briefing Papers

Early marriage, happens before a girl reaches the age of majority. Prior to 2020, the minimum legal age of marriage was 16 years for girls and 18 years for boys in Senegal (https://rutgers.international/wpcontent/ uploads/2023/07/Sub-Saharan-Africa-Senegal-Rutgers-ICPD-interactive.pdf). Early marriage is not only a violation of human rights (Darnah, Utoyo, & Chamidah, 2023; Kohno et al., 2020; Paul & Mondal, 2021), but also deprives girls of opportunities to continue their education, and attain optimum health (Darnah et al., 2023). Children, particularly girls, are subjected to early marriage due to factors such as poverty, and family honor. For example, some communities in Senegal perceive early marriage to uphold family honor and status within the society. Consequently, early marriage is viewed as a safeguard for girls against the prevailing social norms (Ahonsi et al., 2019).



Research Scientist

Benta A. Abuya

Benta is an education specialist with training in Demographic Research.…

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