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Youngsters raise issues of education, child marriage and health at state level meet of child rights forums

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Issues like education, child marriage, health and other children’s rights were taken up by adolescents from 15 districts at a state level meet organized in Bhopal by Child Rights Observatory, MP (CROMP).

About 100 adolescents, members of school forums which are facilitated by district child rights forum network of CROMP in the state, shared their views on varied rights issues. The participants were from districts of Bhopal, Sehore, Khandwa, Bhind, Sheopur, Umaria, Annupur, Raisen, Harda, Chhindwara, Rewa, Jhabua, Alirajpur, Datia and Damoh.

Lavni from Rewa School Forum spoke about the challenges in education and, while Priyanka from Bhopal talked about the challenges of child marriage, Shiksha spoke on the gender divide and how many girls still continue to drop out of the schools and get married early.

They talked of corporal punishment, health, immunization and sanitation. They also spoke on Measles Rubella Vaccination and how adolescent persons can help in spreading information and talk about it.

Nirmala Buch, President of CROMP encouraged adolescents to speak and share their views. She called on them to take leadership and raise the challenges and added that adults and children should together work to help resolve these challenges. She added that CROMP will continue to provide platform to strengthen voices of adolescents.  

Michael Juma, Chief UNICEF, Madhya Pradesh spoke about need of quality in education, bringing children who are out of school back into learning institutions and need of more concerted efforts for ending child marriages in the state. He listened to the adolescents carefully and said we need to listen to adolescents and CRO can do advocacy with the state so that these voices are heard.

Dr.Sheela Bhambal, Secretary, CROMP spoke on the importance of nutrition and health for adolescents and answered their queries on the issue.

Anil Gulati, Communication Specialist, UNICEF, Madhya Pradesh interacted with adolescents in the meet, spoke on the importance of adolescents speaking on the issues which affect them, the need for such platforms to share views and to take the movement forward.

Rashmi Saraswat anchored the programme, and Raghuraj Singh, member of CROMP was present.