December 14, 2014

citizen | too young

Picture of a teenage girl who lives in a shelter for girls who have escaped unwanted marriages in Afghanistan

One of the amazing things about living in such a vibrant and international city is the exposure to cultures and issues from everywhere in the world.  I recently stumbled upon this amazing series of photographs by National Geographic, where they asked their photographers to come up with one photo that was especially meaningful to their journey and explain why.  The photos are beautiful and you should check them all out.  One in particular got me a bit choked up - and reading more. 

This photographer, Stephanie Sinclair, writes about how she met a young woman who had run away from a childhood marriage and it changed her life.  She eventually started an organization called Too Young to Wed that helps provide services and advocacy for child brides.  

Child brides - and the abuse, isolation, and HUGE risk for health problems (including infection, fistulas, and mental health disease) is a world-wide problem that just feels... inhuman.  It's one of the world problems that makes me feel embarrassed for humanity, and woefully inadequate as a world citizen.  For more about this topic (and excellent writing), put Women Hold Up Half the Sky on your reading list (there's also a movie version, if that's more to your liking).

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