India in the news: Child brides & fewer girls

I’m always keeping an eye out for news about women and girls in India. Usually what I come across breaks my heart. Here’s what I saw this week:

India faces crisis over dwindling numbers of girls, UN warns

The dwindling numbers of Indian girls, caused by the illegal abortion of millions of babies, has reached “emergency proportions”, fuelling an increase in crimes such as kidnapping and trafficking, the United Nations warned on Tuesday.

Despite laws that ban expectant parents from running tests to determine the gender of unborn children, female foeticide remains a common practice in parts of India, where a preference for sons runs deep.

“It is tragically ironic that the one who creates life is herself denied the right to be born,” said Lakshmi Puri, deputy executive director of U.N. Women … Read the article

India Home to One in Every Three Child Brides in World: United Nations

United Nations:  India has the sixth highest prevalence of child marriage in the world with one in every three child brides living in India, a United Nations report said.

Child marriage among girls is most common in South Asia and sub-Saharan Africa and India is among the top 10 countries with the highest rates of child marriage, UNICEF said in a report titled “Ending Child Marriage – Progress and prospects.”

“South Asia is home to almost half (42 per cent) of all child brides worldwide; India alone accounts for one third of the global total,” the report said… Read the article

These are just cold statistics – but behind every number beats the heart of a woman or girl who is living every day believing that she doesn’t have value. That she is worthless. Unwanted.

This is why I’m so passionate about our literacy program and the skills these classes provide to help break the cycle of poverty driving many of these choices. And why I’m so thankful for our partners in India who (along with  literacy skills) are spreading the desperately needed truth that God cherishes girls and women… that they are His precious daughters.

Will you take 5 minutes right now and pray these 5 prayers for girls in India?