ISSN: 1391 - 0531
Sunday November 18, 2007
Vol. 42 - No 25

Workshop to save the children from misery

By Sinniah Gurunathan, Trinco cor.

With child marriage on the increase among the internally displaced accommodated in welfare centres, the British NGO Save the Children has decided to organize a workshop seeking the assistance of the media to make the displaced aware about child related issues, including child marriage.

So far 15 child marriages are reported from a welfare centre located at Pattithidal in Mutur south division. Two couples under the age of sixteen had married with the blessing of their parents.

According to a study conducted by officials of several non-governmental organizations, the rest are under aged couples who had eloped and were living as husband and wife in the centre - a make shift structure which has no privacy. The study further reveals that the illicit liquor menace is spreading fast among adults displaced living in these centres and this is also contributing to a certain extent for underage girls and boys to elope and live as husband and wife.

This was disclosed at a news briefing held by the Save the Children organization at its Trincomalee office on Wednesday. Save the Children head of media communications Ms. Menaca Calyaneratne, Trincomalee Deputy District Manager Mark Patterson and Mr. D.M.W.Dissanayake of the Child Protection Sector participated in the briefing. The workshop on child related issues is to be held in mid-January next year.

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