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Say no to child marriage in Tanzania



[The petition is now closed]

When we asked you to stand with young people and brave girls in Tanzania, as they campaigned for the law to be changed to make child marriage illegal, we were overwhelmed by your support.

An incredible 49,125 people from around the world signed the petition, urging the Tanzanian Government to make all marriage of children under 18 illegal, and our Youth for Change advocates took your names to the minister responsible for changing the law.

This youth-led action was part of a wider movement calling for change on the issue – and that movement worked. In October 2019 the Court of Appeal in Tanzania upheld the 2016 High Court ruling which changed the minimum age of marriage for girls from 14 to 18.

41,000 girls under 18 are married around the world every day

14is the age a girl can be married in Tanzania – for boys it’s 18

5,500 girls under the age of 15 give birth every day across the globe

Joyce was just 15 when she had to leave school and marry a man more than twice her age.


On average, one in three girls in Tanzania is married before they turn 18. In rural areas, some girls are married as young as 11.

The consequences of child marriage can be very serious – lasting a lifetime. Girls who marry young will often be forced to drop out of school and abandon their education. They’re more likely to have children before their young bodies are ready, and to be subject to violent abuse.

Youth advocates Upendo and Aidan are leading the campaign to make child marriage illegal in Tanzania.

Stand with young people

"From the first day I held my younger sister in my hands, I felt a responsibility. The community is ready to make a change."
- Upendo, 24

Meet Youth For Change advocates Upendo and Aidan, and find out why they’re standing with brave girls to make child marriage illegal in Tanzania.

Actor Natalie Dormer with Khadija on her visit to Tanzania

Natalie Dormer says NO to child marriage

The young girls of Tanzania are asking for an end to child marriage. I'm standing with them.

Actor Natalie Dormer, star of Game of Thrones, lent her support to the campaign after visiting Tanzania. During her trip she met Khadija, left, whose dreams of becoming a teacher were shattered when she had to get married.

The petition to end child marriage had more than 42,000 signatures

How you made change happen in Malawi

When we stand with girls around the world, we know we can make change happen.

In 2016, more than 42,000 of you signed a petition to end child marriage in Malawi – and it worked. In 2017, the government agreed to change the Constitution, closing a loophole that made it legal for children to be married.

By signing our petition, you've taken a vital step to helping brave girls and young people change the law in Tanzania, too.

Stand with brave girls everywhere

Join the Because I am a Girl campaign