Kaolack is the capital of the Kaolack region, located in west central Senegal.
Around 200,000 people live in this city, which is often referred to as the “peanut basin” as much of the local economy is based on the trading and processing of peanuts. However, this economic activity is increasingly threatened by drought and flooding.
Children are vulnerable to the consequences of food and job insecurity, while also being victims of child marriage, due to cultural beliefs.
Since 1983, SOS Children’s Villages has been supporting children, young people and families and advocating for their rights in Kaolack.
In Senegal, many girls are still victim of of child marriages. Indeed, 29% of women are married before they turn 18. Child marriage is a violation of the universal declaration of human rights, and the emotional damage a child suffers from a forced union is profound. There is also an increased risk of child pregnancies, sexually transmitted diseases and domestic violence.
Poverty is a major cause of early child marriage. In the province of Kaolack specifically, around 50% of all women were married before age 18. The target to end child marriage by 2030 will require a major push from the government.
In the words of Kofi Annan, climate change”is vital question for Africa. No region has done less to contribute to the climate crisis, but no region will pay a higher price for failure to tackle it.”
Senegal is one of the countries that will suffer the most from climate change, which includes rising sea level and repeated droughts and floods.
In Kaolack specifically, a region that is dependent on agriculture, the consequences of climate change are very tangible. In a region where 58% of people live in poverty, many families could be affected. Children are most vulnerable to the effects of climate change