After enduring 13 years of physical and psychological torture, Berivan Elif Kilic decided to leave the husband she was forced to marry and commit her life to protecting other young girls from enduring the same horror.

When Kilic was just 15, she was taken out of school, married off to a cousin and gave birth to two children soon after, the Daily Beast reported. Though the legal age to marry in her home country of Turkey is now 17, the practice of marrying girls off is still rampant.

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A high-powered group of global leaders, campaigners and celebrities joined forces today to get 57 million children into school and learning.

The Emergency Coalition for Global Education Action was announced at the 2015 Countdown Summit in Washington, DC, to pressure the international community to take action on behalf of children across the world.

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WASHINGTON, Apr 3 2014 (IPS) - Although half the world's population is under 25 years old, young people in more than two dozen countries feel that their opportunities for educational, economic and societal advancement are limited, according to new research released here Thursday.

Researchers say the results should help to drive and prioritise both public and private investment in services. 

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Leaders of Myanmar's four main religions met this week to make a joint 'Myanmar Interfaith Declaration' on the rights of the child.

The declaration expressed their commitment to the notion that every child can enjoy his or her rights according to the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child. The commitment was given at an event organised by a partnership between the Ratana Metta Organisation and UNICEF and held at the Chatrium Hotel on April 2-3.

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Today, 600 million adolescent girls live around the world, with 250 million of them living on less than $2 a day. Many of these girls are vulnerable from the moment they're born. They're vulnerable to discrimination, inequality and violence simply because they are born female.

The statistics are shocking. Young women in sub-Saharan Africa are up to eight times more likely than young men to be living with HIV. One in four girls under 17 reports experiencing sexual abuse worldwide, with rates being much higher in developing countries. And girls are less likely to be in school than their male counterparts, with parents often putting household duties and chores before education and learning.

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Woman Feeds Water to HIV Patient

During this week's 58th session of the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women, the global community will come together to reflect on key achievements and challenges in advancing progress toward the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) for women and girls. This provides an opportune moment to examine the impact of one such challenge: violence against women and girls.

Violence against women and girls has impeded progress on nearly every MDG. This includes efforts to reach the MDG 6 target of halting and beginning to reverse the spread of HIV/AIDS--an epidemic that still disproportionally affects women and girls in many countries. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), one in three women worldwide has experienced physical and/or sexual violence in her lifetime. Women who experience violence also often face serious health consequences, including higher rates of unintended pregnancies, mental health problems, and sexually transmitted infections (STIs), including HIV.

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Pass Marriage Law, Adopt Comprehensive Approach

(LILONGWE) – THE GOVERNMENT OF MALAWI SHOULD INCREASE EFFORTS TO END WIDESPREAD CHILD AND FORCED MARRIAGE, OR RISK WORSENING POVERTY, ILLITERACY, AND PREVENTABLE MATERNAL DEATHS IN THE COUNTRY, HUMAN RIGHTS WATCH SAID IN A REPORT RELEASED TODAY, AHEAD OF INTERNATIONAL WOMEN'S DAY ON MARCH 8, 2014.

ACCORDING TO GOVERNMENT STATISTICS, HALF OF THE GIRLS IN MALAWI WILL BE MARRIED BY THEIR 18TH BIRTHDAY, WITH SOME AS YOUNG AS AGE 9 OR 10 BEING FORCED TO MARRY. 

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Gender equality is not just a concern for women and girls, a panel of experts gathered at the United Nations in New York stressed today, highlighting the need to engage men and boys as allies and agents of change in this global struggle.

"Gender equality isn't just a women's issue. It is an issue for all. It is a rights issue because women's rights are human rights," declared Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, Executive Director of the UN Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN Women), as she kicked off an event on the margins of the annual session of the Commission on the Status of Women.

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UNITED NATIONS, Mar 12 2014 (IPS) - In order to go to school, Sarah, a girl living in rural Ethiopia, escaped the village and an arranged marriage at 14, returning to her home at age 23, when she could finally enter a classroom again. In a conversation with a youth advocate for education, named Chernor Bah, Sarah asked, "Why does it have to be so hard for me, just because I'm a girl?"

Sarah used to be one of the 100 million women, mostly from least developed countries (LDCs), who could not read.

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There are many problems facing the world of education today but one that must be urgently addressed is its failure to equip young people with the skills they need to move into the workplace. A recent study has found that nearly one in four IT opportunities worldwide had gone unfulfilled in 2012 because of a lack of candidates with the relevant training or experience.

Add to this that IT is one of the fastest growing industries in the world today and it can be seen that if we are losing 25 percent of its job opportunities, in a global economy where job opportunities are already scarce, we are in big trouble.

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