In 2023, with support from the Spotlight Initiative, the AUC compiled draft guidance documents on Advocacy…
Rational for Establishing the End Child Marriage Community of Practice. In 2017 the African Union Commission conducted an evaluation for Ending Child Marriage Campaign that found out that whereas the African Union had been marked progress on delivering its mandate for advocacy and capacity building through the campaign, there were lapses at the member state level, particularly in moving forward from the post campaign launch stage to actual implementation. In many countries, the difficulties in developing costed plans and effective coordination mechanisms greatly hampered implementation of the campaign.
Additionally, as the African Union and Member state level interventions are being ramped up for the Ending Child Marriages Campaign, the COVID19 pandemic and its corresponding prevention measures has created unprecedented challenges for programme implementation and posed a major risk to reverse the important gains the African Union, its member states and partners have made in realizing girls and women’s human rights across the continent. Up to 10 million child marriage cases are anticipated by 2030 as a result of COVID19 related education and social economic disruptions and resulting disparaging effects on household incomes which have left families desperate and living in abject poverty. Notwithstanding, the continent has recently recorded humanitarian crises such as armed conflict, floods and droughts all of which have exacerbated the vulnerabilities of women and girls.
2.0 PURPOSE AND OBJECTIVES
The purpose of the AUC Campaign to End Child Marriage Community of practice is to provide an interactive platform that fully engages member states and partners to accelerate the implementation of the campaign to end child marriage.
Specific objectives of the End Child Marriage Campaign Community of Practice
- To provide an interactive physical and virtual space for member states and partners to share experiences, practices, knowledge and utilizing evidence from programmes to end child marriage.
- To provide a platform for country technical assistance including capacity building to guide the end child marriage campaign in 30-member states.
- To create opportunity for follow- up of country action plans and support national and continental advocacy events on ending child marriage.
- Create an interactive platform for young people to actively lead and champion efforts and initiatives to end child marriage
- To share professional development opportunities and relevant contemporary research and reports with members of the Community of Practice
EXPECTED OUTCOMES OF THE END CHILD MARRIAGE COMMUNITY OF PRACTICE
- The generation of evidence, lessons learned, data and good practices from partners and members states which will guide knowledge sharing and strengthened multi-sector coordination and accelerated actions and implementation of the End Child Marriage Campaign across the African Union, member state governments, development partners, non-governmental organizations, civil society organizations, and youth, women led and girl focused organizations;
- Clear platform in place for enhancing technical capacity and follow up of country action plans for implementing the campaign to end child marriage among member states.
- The identification, adaptation, replicable implementation and scale up of best practices by all actors, that can fast track the continent’s achievement of the SDG goal 5.3 which seeks to eliminate all harmful practices, such as child, early and forced marriage and female genital mutilations in Africa by 2030.
- Capacity of all actors built on current laws and policy reforms data trends and their role in leading and supporting the implementation of good practices towards ending child marriages.
3.0 DELIVERY MECHANISMS FOR THE COMMUNITY OF PRACTICE
In order to achieve its objectives, the ECM Community of practice will adapt a variety of innovative methods and channels that are interactive and participatory.
- Conduct a series of monthly online webinar, which will focus on selected thematic areas, topics
- Post learnings best practices, programme documentation on the African Union hosted End Child Marriage Campaign website from member states.
- Sharing of progress reports, case studies, data analytics, guidance documents and multimedia, for both reference and for scale up support for the campaign countries
- Knowledge exchange activities and products available through the Ending Child Marriage Campaign Community of Practice
- Online and in person capacity building sessions to enhance the capacity of member state and partner stakeholders in specific technical areas of the campaign
- An annual physical share fair that brings together all ECM campaign stakeholders in learning from each other and identifying innovations for scale up in the specific context of different countries.