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Feeding schemes needed as girls (11) fall pregnant in Zhombe

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Feeding schemes needed as girls (11) fall pregnant in Zhombe

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PRISCA MANYIWA-MASUKU
MIRROR REPORTER

ZHOMBE – Villagers gathered for Health, Education and Rights (HER) training have called for the introduction of feeding schemes at schools in Zhombe as girls, as young as Grade 5 are dropping out of schools because of early pregnancies.
The training was facilitated by Ministry of Women’s Affairs, Katswe Sistahood and held at Zhombe, Joel Business Centre last week.
They also called for economic empowerment projects for child headed families.
The little minors are lured into sex by older boys who drop out of school and make money through illegal gold mining. The villagers called for an awareness campaign for illegal miners so that they don’t marry young children.
They said early marriages and pregnancies in Zhombe are driven by drought which has seen families running out of food. They said that girls as young as 11 are dropping out of school to get married.
During a training of Health, Education and Rights ward committees by the HER Kwekwe District taskforce at Zhombe, Joel Business Centre last week, villagers from different wards revealed that hunger and poverty are the main drivers of child marriages in their areas.
“Children are dropping out school from Grade 5. They are getting married at that tender age because of poverty. We have young artisinal miners who drop out school, make some money and lure young girls out of school in the name of marriage,” said Janet Chadoka, a teacher.
“We need feeding schemes in schools because children are going to school hungry. They are easily lured out of school by artisinal miners with a few dollars,” said Ward 12 representative.
The wards HER committeees were urged to be watchdog of their communities and come up with strategies that suit in their community to end child marriages and school dropouts.

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