Give the Gift of a Childhood

When fifteen-year-old Samira’s family fled the war in Syria for Jordan, her parents wanted desperately to protect her from the threats of rape and other violence targeting Syrian girls. They thought finding her a husband was their best — and only — option to ensure their daughter was well cared for and protected from lurking predators. 

Kenyan Girls Hubbie.jpgThey are too young to be married. 

Shortly after arriving at a refugee camp last year, Samira was married to a much older Saudi man. He offered a bride-price that Samira’s destitute parents desperately needed to feed their other children. Her parents hoped he would also offer protection. 

They couldn’t have been more wrong. 

But to their horror, Samira’s new husband returned her shortly after consummating the marriage. Some people are calling this rising phenomenon “pleasure marriage,” but you and I know what this really is — forced prostitution and rape of a child.  

No matter where I am in the world, when I visit our sisters working with young girls in situations of war or natural disaster, one thing is gravely apparent: war and disaster make girls like Samira more vulnerable to violence, rape, forced marriage and early pregnancy. And the harm can be life-long.

In northern Kenya, frequent droughts push poor families to arrange marriages for their daughters in exchange for a dowry. Many of these young brides are forced to undergo female genital mutilation and drop out of school.

And in Colombia, young girls exploited as child soldiers experience unimaginable violence, including sexual servitude and forced abortions. 

But with your help, MADRE and our partners are there for these girls. 

Your continued support will give girls who have been raped and forcibly married medical care, including reproductive health check-ups and trauma counseling, and the support they need to heal from this abuse.

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Kenya School Girl.jpgThanks to you, she is safe from danger.

You’ll help us keep the doors open to our network of school-shelters in Kenya that offer refuge and education for young girls in danger of forced marriage and female genital mutilation. Your gift today will bring confidence to a girl to continue her education and become a leader in her community.

And you’ll help us provide trauma counseling and art therapy to former child soldiers in Colombia. Your gift today will bring a girl the healing she needs to rebuild her life from the violence she’s endured. 

And that’s not all. In Nicaragua, IraqAfghanistan and Guatemala, where girls are escaping brutal violence every day, you’ll help us offer special caretaking, including shelter, medical care and counseling, to safeguard their childhoods and build a brighter future.

The impact of your gift today will be huge for these young girls. It will bring confidence to a girl in Kenya to continue her education and become a leader in her community. It will offer a girl in Colombia the healing she needs to rebuild her life after the trauma she’s endured. It will protect the childhood of a girl waiting to go home to Syria, and so much more.

You can be there for these girls with a tax-deductible gift today. On behalf all of the brave young girls we support together, thank you for your generosity.

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With gratitude,

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Yifat Susskind
MADRE Executive Director

P.S. Click here to read the stories of some of the inspiring young girls we support together. Help these girls build their confidence and turn their lives around with a tax-deductible gift today.