from ARNOLD MULENGA in Lusaka, Zambia
LUSAKA, (CAJ News) – DOMESTIC and gender-based violence have been cited as the main push factors for many girls that have left Mozambique and Zambia to live in South Africa.
The majority of these girls want a better future, through education or work.
This is according to Save the Children, following a recently-conducted study.
“Regardless of the situation in their countries of origin or while on the move, girls that are adequately received in destination countries get married and have children later, and obtain a higher level of education”, says Helena Thybell, regional secretary general of Save the Children.
The children’s rights group also cited hunger as another factor.
The study by Save the Children, titled ‘Girls on the Move’, took place in three continents.
It listed key motivations and outcomes among girls aged 7 – 23 who migrate to South Africa, Serbia, Greece, Colombia, Mexico and Bosnia and Herzegovina.
The study lamented that girls on the move were particularly vulnerable to rights violations and grave risks during their journeys.
“Their stories highlight serious rights violations and strong urgency and determination to improve their outcomes,” Save the Children stated.
Despite suffering a spike in gender-based violence, South Africa is the destination of choice for African nationals seeking better opportunities.
– CAJ News