Giaccherini set to see specialist

first_img “It is the same injury he had before. I don’t want to go further, but it’s not good. I hope the specialist opinion in the week is positive.” Giaccherini, who joined the club in a £6.5million switch from Juventus in July 2013, sat out three months of the season before returning as a substitute in the 3-1 Barclays Premier League defeat to Hull at the Stadium of Light on Boxing Day. However, his comeback amounted to just six games after he was injured once again during the 3-1 FA Cup fourth-round replay victory at Fulham on February 3, one of just four starts he has made this season. His latest spell on the sidelines comes as £10million summer signing Jack Rodwell too battles for fitness having not reappeared since his red card against Fulham in the first game on January 24 after damaging a calf muscle. Poyet was at least able to welcome Lee Cattermole back to the side after a 10-game absence for Saturday’s frustrating 0-0 draw with West Brom. The Uruguayan said: “At any level, you need different characters and in special moments, you need certain ones and I think Lee is one of them. “He is very important in difficult moments.” Press Association Sunderland midfielder Emanuele Giaccherini will see a specialist this week amid fears that an injury-wrecked season could be all but over for him. center_img The 29-year-old Italy international has made only 10 appearances for the club to date this term because of a combination of groin and ankle injuries, and it is recurrence of his ankle problem which is currently giving cause for concern. Head coach Gus Poyet told the Sunderland Echo: “It doesn’t look good. We are reassessing, but we will get a full update [this] week. last_img read more

GDF retain Terrence Alli Boxing championships title … Williamson, Mounter named Best Boxer in respective categories

first_imgTHE Guyana Defence Force (GDF) retained championship honours when the curtains came down on the Guyana Boxing Association’s (GBA) Terrence Alli National Open Championships at the National Gymnasium, Mandela Avenue, on Sunday night.Rose Hall Jammers’ (RHJ) Joel Williamson was named Best Elite Boxer, while Essequibo Boxing Gym’s (Esse) Akiel Mounter was adjudged Best Youth Boxer on show.The soldiers accumulated 15 points to win the Best Gym award while Republican Gym (Guyana Prison Service) placed second with seven points.The Army head coach and Technical Director of the GBA, Terrence Poole, was named Best Coach of the championships.Williamson was given the Best Boxer award after scoring a third-round Technical Knock Out victory over GDF’s Triston Browne on the opening night (Friday) of the championships in the lightweight division.He then returned the following night and registered a knockout win at two minutes nine seconds of the first round against Anandram Dharamaj of the Republican Gym.Williamson capped off his quest for championship honours with a points decision win against GDF’s Rhondel Douglas in the final on Sunday night and was deservedly rewarded for his success.Mounter,who competed in the middleweight division of the Youth category,scored a unanimous decision win against Stephon Smith of the Forgotten Youth Foundation (FYF) Gym on Saturday night, then recorded another points decision win against Shekel Jamon also of the FYF gym on Sunday evening.In other results from Sunday night’s finals, Jamal Eastman of the RHJ gym registered a knockout win against Ryan Albert in their lightweight contest in the Youth category.In the Elite category, Richard Subratte of the FYF gym scored a technical knock-out win at two minutes 45 seconds of the second round in his junior flyweight fight against GDF’s Victor Low; Julius Kesney ((RHJ) lost on points to Republican’s Kevin Allicock in their flyweight contest; Steffon Green (GDF) stopped his gym mate Clairmont Gibson at two minutes 5 seconds of the first round in their bantamweight contest; Colin Lewis of the GDF was too good for his gym-mate Aquany Harvey in their junior welterweight bout, winning by a unanimous decision.In the welterweight final, Marley Ross of the GDF lost to Republican’s Joshua Joseph in their welterweight bout and Dennis Thomas (Police) stopped Joshua Fraser at two minutes 35 seconds of the second round in their middleweight fight.In the heavyweight division, Brian Leitch (Republican) lost on points to his gym-mate Jason Backer and in the super heavyweight, Floyd Cato retired on his stool at the end of the first round when he faced his gym-mate Renee Lewis.last_img read more

Ramdhani completes successful season at Kings University in Canada

first_imgHAVING gone undefeated for the first two Alberta Colleges Athletic Conference (ACAC) badminton tournaments this season, Narayan Ramdhani has dominated his competition and closed his first season at Kings University in Canada as the third overall-ranked badminton player in the nation.He easily secured a spot at the provincial championships in February and emerged from the tournament ranked first nationally. In the process, Narayan was awarded an ACAC All-Conference award.In March, across the country at the CCAA National Championships, held at Dalhousie Agricultural Campus in Truro, NS, Narayan finished with a 3-2 record in his matches and a bronze medal around his neck, which meant he was third overall in the country.In a comment to the media, Ramdhani’s head coach, Naeem Haque, stated; “Narayan is a tall, fast, smart player. I’m very proud of what he’s accomplished.”Meanwhile Kings’ president, Melanie Humphreys, noted; “I was talking to Narayan after he won his bronze medal. He said, ‘Next year I’m getting a gold!’ I told him to celebrate this win; he was third in Canada, after all! It was very, very cool, and he’s ecstatic as well.”Eagles Athletics badminton programme joined the ACAC in 2014. Badminton athletes have represented Kings at nationals previously, but Ramdhani has the distinction of being Kings’ first badminton athlete to medal nationally.last_img read more

Walk-on Seamus Shanley finally gets chance to start for Syracuse in senior season

first_img Facebook Twitter Google+ Joe Shanley stood giddy, waiting for Syracuse — and his son Seamus — to charge through the Carrier Dome tunnel. A DPS officer of more than eight years, Joe had worked every home football game, patrolling the student section. He’d seen it before. He’d seen his son, a walk-on right guard, come out of tunnel. He knew what it looked like. But on Friday, for the first time in his career, he wasn’t working the game. Instead he was in section 103, in the midst of a fully-packed row of family and friends. Joe stood, talking to anyone who would listen. A beer in his hand. A faux-relaxed demeanor on his face. “Here we go,” he said to no one in particular. “Here it comes.” He’d seen Seamus take the field 17 times before. It never felt like this. For the first time in Seamus’ four-year career, he’d be starting. “There’s a lot of moments I can remember personally that I look back at now and say, ‘Wow, that would have been an opportunity for you to give up,’” Joe said of his son. “But he didn’t. And it might sound cliché, but he’s been an inspiration to me.”AdvertisementThis is placeholder textSeamus spent three full years waiting to get a chance that his family says he hoped to earn before this year. He came to Syracuse with just two years of football experience, walked on with the help of his father, a high school classmate of then-SU head coach Doug Marrone, and stood or sat patiently on the sidelines for 35 of his first 38 games in an Orange uniform. It wasn’t until after Syracuse got back from Fort Drum in late August that the SU coaches started practicing Seamus with the starters. He’d impressed all camp, improving his footwork, not missing on assignments.“In the back of my mind, you always want to shoot for the stars,” Seamus said. “You want to be that guy. You want to overachieve for yourself. But coming in, I never really thought I would get a chance like this.” Seamus had season-ending knee surgery in his senior year of high school. He didn’t have college football offers. It was a sport he hadn’t even picked up until his sophomore year. But Joe asked Marrone to look at his tape and told Joe he could bring him on but not much else. That was the opportunity when there weren’t any others. What followed was a steady improvement from Seamus, to the point that Marrone told Joe — after taking an NFL head coaching job — that he might have a chance to play down the road. The narrative of his career was one of a player that was team-first, a good locker room guy. But Seamus desired more.
“Sometimes, he got frustrated because he felt that he has earned a little bit more than he was given,” his sister Jessica Shanley said. “Seamus has never felt entitled to start, let alone play. But there have been moments when he comes home and he’d been a little frustrated.”After injuring his thumb in the spring, Seamus worked out with a full cast on his hand. When Joe saw him take the field, he said that his arms were so big that they looked like legs. Throughout camp, the Syracuse coaches kept a bulletin board with each player’s practice score. It’s a way for everyone to know how they’re doing, and how they stack up with everyone else. The score determines the depth chart. And Seamus had a higher score than now-backup Aaron Roberts, as well as few of the other starters. Offensive lineman Omari Palmer, who is also Seamus’ roommate, said he thought the walk-on had to do even more to get the opportunity he has now. When a program is paying a scholarship player a quarter of a million dollars, Palmer said, they want that person to win the job.“But you can’t deny production,” Palmer said. “When you go out on the field, and you consistently do what you have to do. He found a way to do it. He found a way to overcome his physical problems, which is maybe his height, his arm length, his short legs or whatever. “He found a way to mentally push himself … which is really when you really start living. He’s living right now.” For those close to Seamus, they’ve seen how far he’s really come. He used to be the little kid, troubled by his parents’ divorce. The one that lacked maturity and was a part of family counseling. They see how he’s now become “the golden child” as an SU senior.They’ve seen how he went from a walk-on by convenient circumstance, to a player that could, any week, get a call saying he’s earned a scholarship. After his family met him outside the locker room, they congratulated him and told him how well he had played. He shrugged it off. “I did OK,” he said. For someone that’s been on an upward trajectory his entire SU career, being content isn’t something Seamus is used to. “Sometimes people can try their best and it still isn’t good enough,” said his stepmom Jeanette Shanley. “And for him to know that he could do that and work with his team and to be able to be on that field, it’s just incredible. It’s absolutely incredible.” Comments Published on September 7, 2015 at 8:41 pm Contact Sam: | @SamBlum3last_img read more

Rugby World Cup squad return to training

first_imgConnacht host Zebre at the Sportsground from half-past seven, while Leinster are away to the Scarlets at 7.35.Ulster’s trip to Murrayfield to face Edinburgh will kick-off at quarter-to-eight. Head coach Joe Schmidt will be hoping that Johnny Sexton will be able to take a full-part in the session as he continues his recovery from injury, while Keith Earls is also expected to return to action after he was rested last Tuesday.After the work-out, a decision is expected on whether or not the Irish management team are planning to lodge an appeal against Sean O’Brien’s suspension while there will also be an update on Paul O’Connell’s surgery.Later tonight, Connacht, Leinster and Ulster are all in action in the Guinness Pro12.last_img

GOtv Boxing Night 9: Nigeria, Ghana Rekindle Age-old Rivalry

first_imgThe fight line-up was announced by the event organisers, Flykite Promotions, at a press conference in Lagos on Tuesday. Managing Director, Flykite Promotions, Jenkins Alumona, described the two Ghanaian boxers as crack opponents, saying they were carefully chosen to give their Nigerian opponents very tough fights.“King and Amenfu are highly rated in their country which, as we know, is one of Africa’s boxing powerhouses. They have been picked to provide tough tests for our boxers and fans can expect blockbuster bouts. There is the additional edge of national pride and massive bragging rights,” explained Alumona.He added that GOtv Boxing Night 9 will, for the first time, feature more than six bouts, which is in celebration of the country’s independence and the fifth anniversary of GOtv operations in October. The event will have the national cruiserweight title fight between Idowu Okusote and Ekeng Henshaw.In another lightweight bout, Sikiru Shogbesan will duel with Prince Nwoye. The light middleweight division will provide a challenge bout between Semiu Olapade and Ebubechukwu Edeh, while Kabiru Towolawi will face Emmanuel Igwe in a light heavyweight challenge contest.Another light heavyweight clash pits reigning champion, Jude Iloh against Adewale Masebinu.The best boxer at the event, which will be broadcast live on SuperSport in 47 African countries, will go home with a cash prize of N1.5million and the Mojisola Ogunsanya Memorial Trophy.The cash prize, explained the sponsors, has been increased in celebration of the country’s independence and GOtv’s fifth anniversary.Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegram The age-old sporting rivalry between Nigeria and Ghana will be relived at GOtv Boxing Night 9 holding at the Indoor Sports Hall of the National Stadium, Lagos, on October 2.Included in the fight line-up for the event are two international challenge bouts. One is between Olaide Fijabi, national champion, and elite Ghanaian boxer, Raphael Kwabena King. The other international challenge bout will see national lightweight champion Oto Joseph square up to Ghana’s Richard Amenfu.last_img read more

Starrcast II date, location special guests, panels, more

first_imgFollowing the success of the first Starrcast convention, Starrcast II will take place on May 23-26 in Las Vegas in conjunction with the AEW Double or Nothing show. The second Starrcast event will be a four-day professional wrestling fan convention and will once again feature numerous wrestlers, wrestling personalities and podcast personalities.The first Starrcade event — the brainchild of Conrad Thompson — took place over Labor Day weekend 2018 in Chicago alongside the All In wrestling event, both of which turned out to be huge successes. That convention included meet and greets with current wrestlers and legends, a radio row of live podcasts, and various panels including a Monday Night War Debate between Bruce Prichard and Eric Bischoff as well as a War Games Retrospective with JJ Dillon, Tully Blanchard, Lex Luger, and Road Warrior Animal. Starrcast II looks to be even bigger with the buzz surrounding Double or Nothing and the list of guests that have already been announced. Keep checking here on Sporting News for updates here for more guests, panels, and other shows as they are revealed. Starrcast II date, tickets, start timeStarrcast II will take place on May 23-26 at a location to be determined in Las Vegas. The ticket pre-sale started on Tuesday, Feb. 12 at 8:00 p.m. ET with general public tickets going on sale Friday, Feb. 15 at 12:00 p.m. ET at to watch Starrcast IIFans not in attendance will be able to watch the featured events on the FITE TV app, which is offering the Starrcast Weekend Pass.Starrcast II special guests— Sting— Bret Hart— Jim Ross— Jerry Lawler— Bruce Prichard— Tony Schiavone— Eric Bischoff— Sean Mooney— Shane Helms— Arn Anderson— Lita— Scott Hall— Magnum T.A.— Tully Blanchard— Kevin Nash— Sean Waltman— Ricky Steamboat— JJ Dillon— Barry Windham— Tommy Dreamer— Bill Apter— Terry Funk— Konnan— Jerry Lynn— Joey Ryan— David Arquette— Colt Cabana— The Godfather— Rob Van Dam— Leva Bates— Brian Pillman, Jr. — Hornswoggle— The Young Bucks— Cody— Christopher Daniels— Frankie Kazarian— Scorpio Sky— Brandi Rhodes— Joey Janela— The Undertaker Starrcast II panelsTBA  Starrcast II podcastsTBAlast_img read more

Houston Sober is crowned Duke of Wellington for 2014

first_img Close Forgot password? Please put in your email: Send me my password! Close message Login This blog post All blog posts Subscribe to this blog post’s comments through… RSS Feed Subscribe via email Subscribe Subscribe to this blog’s comments through… RSS Feed Subscribe via email Subscribe Follow the discussion Comment (1) Logging you in… Close Login to IntenseDebate Or create an account Username or Email: Password: Forgot login? Cancel Login Close Username or Email: Password: Lost your password? Cancel Login Dashboard | Edit profile | Logout Logged in as Admin Options Disable comments for this page Save Settings Sort by: Date Rating Last Activity Loading comments… You are about to flag this comment as being inappropriate. Please explain why you are flagging this comment in the text box below and submit your report. The blog admin will be notified. Thank you for your input. 0 Vote up Vote down WHS Fan · 338 weeks ago Congrats Houston. Proud of you Report Reply 0 replies · active 338 weeks ago Post a new comment Enter text right here! Comment as a Guest, or login: Login to IntenseDebate Login to Login to Twitter Go back Tweet this comment Connected as (Logout) Email (optional) Not displayed publicly. Name Email Website (optional) Displayed next to your comments. Not displayed publicly. If you have a website, link to it here. Posting anonymously. Tweet this comment Submit Comment Subscribe to None Replies All new comments Comments by IntenseDebate Enter text right here! Reply as a Guest, or login: Login to IntenseDebate Login to Login to Twitter Go back Tweet this comment Connected as (Logout) Email (optional) Not displayed publicly. Name Email Website (optional) Displayed next to your comments. Not displayed publicly. If you have a website, link to it here. Posting anonymously. Tweet this comment Cancel Submit Comment Subscribe to None Replies All new comments by Tracy McCue, Sumner Newscow — Houston Sober, the son of Patti Sober and Ty Sober, was crowned the Duke of Wellington for 2014.Sober was crowned with Payton Baker, Parker Daugherty, Ben DeJarnett, and Jacob Johnson as attendants.Jaedyn Ledesma, the Duchess of Wellington of 2013-14, presented the crown to Sober in front of a large crowd at the Wellington gymnasium. The coronation followed Wellington boys 67-44 loss to Andale and the girls 43-27 loss to the Lady Indians.Sober is a member of the First United Methodist Church. His school activities include running the Momentum Movement, Business Professionals of America for one year, Fellowship of Christian Athletes for two years, National Honor Society for two years, baseball for four years, cross country for four years, basketball for two years, wrestling for one year and powerlifting for one year. Houston Sober and Jaedyn Ledesma.Out of school, Sober coaches youth basketball and summer baseball, runs Grass Attacker Lawn Service, enjoys flipping homes, and volunteering and expanding the Momentum Movements. He enjoys riding dirt bikes, hanging out with friends, carpentry, and is involved in the stock market.Houston’s honors include Kansas Honors Society, University of Kansas top 10 percent, Presidential scholar, first place at a Cowley College Business competition, and citizenship award his freshman year.His future plans are to attend Emporia State University to study business and finance. Later on he would like to get in to real estate and start and investing firm and manage rental homes as well. Houston is being escorted by Halynn Page.The girl escorts were Avery Lewellen, Kelsey Whaley, Jaedyn Ledesma, Carlie McComb and Haylynn Page.Milo Elder and Georgia Ann Shinliver were the child attendants. The child escorts were Holly Wright and Alex Langford.2014 Wellington High School Homecoming court.last_img read more


first_imgIn 2012, Messengers of Peace (MOP)-Liberia, as part of an ongoing effort to grow and strengthen collaboration with civil society rolled out a 21 day peace activism programme.In MOP, we recognize that partnership with individuals and organizations cut across every aspect of our work, helping to bring about results that no organization can achieve independently. We (MOP) believe that partnership and collaborative relationships with others are critical to delivering results for peace consolidation in Liberia.Since its establishment in 2008, MOP has worked with several partners, starting with the Community Outreach programme, Public Information Section-UNMIL, Catholic Justice and Peace Commission, The Catholic Church-Liberia, The Carter Center, International Alert, Shirley Ann Sullivan Educational Foundation, Peace Building Office, Youth Action International, Center for Media studies and peacebuilding, United Nations Volunteer Programme-Liberia(UNV) and other broad range of partners worldwide to advocate for sustainable peace and development in Liberia.In December 2013, MOP, through its Friends of MOP initiated a month long fundraising campaign to mobilize resources for its peace clubs and to raise public awareness about the need for durable peace. The “Dollar for Peace Campaign” is our first incursion with the public and the corporate sector. MOP’s goal is to engage national peace partnership with the private sector through the corporate social responsibility programme and with other non-public partners to develop a joint response to issues of peace consolidation. The full potential of partnership and collaborative relationship with the private sector would be explored further in the years ahead.All youth based and volunteer based organizations are working towards a common goal of sustainable peace. Therefore, cooperation, collaboration and partnerships are ingredients required to defuse tensions, between communities and countries of the West African region and thereby reduce the risk of increased conflicts.The Palava hut system and the early warning programmes are great examples for peace partnership and collaboration.Our experience partnering with various stake holders has shown that peacebuilding strategies of Peace Advocacy, partnership and engagement are becoming the over arching national planning tool in many post conflict environment, providing a vital opportunity for placing peace initiatives as the core of national development programmes using a multi-sectoral and scaled up response.Using capacity building and partnership strengthening approaches to address peace building and consolidation issues, helps ensure synergy and avoid duplication of programmes. It also helps to foster greater alignment between global initiative and national development strategies and to acc as a conduit between local and national actors and national peace policy making processes.The importance of partnering for peace in Liberia cannot be overemphasized and despite the benefits of peace partnership, important challenges exist, for instance, not one non-governmental organization, Government organization and even the private sector has the capacity to leverage the strategic and allocative priority of global programme funds for peace. Many partnerships rely on piece meal, ad hoc and hand down approaches to access funds.MOP firm believes that existing silo, ad hoc and piece meal approaches to building and consolidation of peace in Liberia helps no one. Too often peace building initiatives are still treated as an “add on” or optional extra not seen as important by the private sector. During the planning phase of last year International Day of Peace, MOP approached one of the telephone companies with a proposal for partnership but was informed the company was more interested in growing their clientele. Given that private sector has no history of partnering for peace with local NGOs, it is about time to start one.We have come to understand that capacity building programmes and sponsorships explicitly support primary stakeholders and not everyone. Access to new digital social media system to collect quantitative and quality date from counties for early warning and dissemination of information and for monitoring is limited.There is a general lack of organization-wide and coherent understanding of what partnerships and collaborative relationships are; what value they can add to the realization of sustainable peace and what form of cooperation is most appropriate under which circumstances.Our interactions with private partners, international organizations and even other local non-governmental organizations have shown bureaucratic burden as one of the most important burdens in working with partners. Most private organizations still too often see local peace builders as mere contractors, service providers and implementing agents rather than as genuine partners.What most NGOs want are relevant relationships that deliver real value. Fully embracing partnerships and collaborative networking; either formal or informal; is the only way of doing peace business. This, however, entails a transformation of current mindset of individuals and organizations.Messengers of Peace-Liberia is more interested in getting tangible value in return for their time, attention, endorsement and data. We therefore urge organizations, particularly the private sector to acknowledge other local NGOs as genuine partners operating at eye level in the pursuit of common goals, rather than as mere sponsors, supporters or agents.Messengers of Peace will pursue a way forward by increasing, in the short term, the use of informal collaborative relationships and strengthen cooperation with knowledge partners and build strategic alliance with the media. In its medium term plan, MOP intends to organize an annual social responsibility recognition award for all private enterprise operating in Liberia. A more strategic approach through information sharing, networking, collaboration and partnership is not only essential but critical.This article is best surmised by an African saying “One hand cannot tie a bundle” The message here is the need to create space for the meaningful involvement and participation of civil society in the peace consolidation process. It’s something worth thinking about.Until next week, remember: Peace, above all, Peace First. Let Peace Prevail.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Lawrence says UNICEF report on child marriage misleading

first_img… 6% of Guyanese girls are wedded before 15 – reportBy Jeanna Pearsonsocial Protection Minister Volda Lawrence has stated that because of cultural differences in Guyana, there is a clause in the Sexual Offences Act which allows for a child under the age of 15 to be married.Social Protection MinisterVolda LawrenceHer statement comes on the heels of the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) report, “The state of the world’s children 2016: A fair chance for every child”, which indicated that six per cent of children in Guyana were married by the age of 15, while 23 per cent are married by the age of 18.Lawrence expressed shock over the report and stated that while she has not seen it, the figures were misleading taking into consideration the provision in the Sexual Offences Act.“We don’t have child marriage,” she responded, further explaining that there was a clause in the Sexual Offences Act which allowed for a parent to carry their child to the court and ask for consent for him/her to be married.Director of the Guyana Responsible Parenthood Association (GRPA) Patricia Bisnauth, in an interview with Guyana Times, stated that “culture” was one of the major factors why child marriages occurred.“It is because we believe that the ultimate goal of a girl is to get married and so by marrying young, you prevent pregnancy before marriage, but what we are doing is enslaving our girls,” she said pointedly, asserting that at 15 years old a girl is not in a physical or emotional state to raise a family.“And this worries us because they are not ready for marriage or equal partnership,” she said.Patricia Sheerattan BisnauthThe report revealed these percentages were calculated for the years 2008 to 2014. It also stated that 10 per cent of men and 10 per cent of females justified wife beating for the period of 2010 to 2015.It indicated that two of the major factors for child marriage, which accounted for some 15 million girls being married globally every year, were poverty and children with little to no education. It stated that girls with educational constraints were up to six times more likely to be married than girls who have a secondary education.Past reports by the international organisations had stated that Amerindian and East Indian women were more likely to be married before age 18 when compared to African women. It highlighted that these women were usually 10 or more years younger than their husbands.The situation had deteriorated to a point where Guyana was ranked alongside Trinidad and Tobago as countries where adolescent marriages were prevalent. In Guyana, a teen can be legally married at the age of 16 with the consent of a parent or legal guardian.However, the UNICEF report insists that adolescent marriage violates a child’s right to an education and a normal childhood. It stated that these girls are subordinate to their husbands and families, and as such, have become more vulnerable to domestic violence, and are not in a position to make decisions about safe sex and family planning – which inevitably puts them at higher risk of sexually transmitted infections, including HIV, high-risk pregnancy and childbearing before their bodies are fully mature.It expounded that mothers who are still children are at higher risk of potentially disabling complications, like obstetric fistula (complication caused by prolonged obstructed labour), and both they and their babies are more likely to die.According to the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) 2013 report, titled “Motherhood In Childhood: Facing the challenge of adolescent pregnancy”, the Caribbean ranks second only to continental Africa in the number of adolescent girls under 18 years old becoming pregnant annually. Approximately 20 per cent of young girls across the Region reported having their first pregnancy as adolescents.Meanwhile, UNICEF affirmed that while child marriage may seem to be an intractable problem, it occurred because societies often placed a lesser value on girls. However, it indicated that there are tested strategies that can change girls’ lives, preserve their childhoods and empower them to make better futures for themselves and their societies.“These involve increasing girls’ access to education, empowering girls with knowledge and skills, educating parents and communities, increasing economic incentives and supporting families, and strengthening and enforcing laws and policies that set the minimum age of marriage at 18 for both girls and boys,” the report stated, adding that education was one of the most crucial factors.It stated that focused investments to reach and empower poor and marginalised girls through health, education, social protection and other systems can create alternative pathways for girls and their families. No less critical is the slow, patient work of changing social norms.UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador Angelique Kidjo stated that when a girl’s education was cut short, she lost the chance to gain the skills and knowledge to secure a good job and provide for herself and her family.“They are socially isolated. As I observed among my former schoolmates who were forced to get married, the consciousness of their isolation is in itself painful. By robbing girls of their potential, child marriage robs families, communities and nations of the contributions these girls might have made as women,” she said, adding that the phenomenon hampered countries’ efforts to improve the health of mothers and children, fight malnutrition and keep children in school.“When girls are married as children, they cannot help but pass on poverty, low education and poor health – into which they themselves have been trapped – to the next generation,” she affirmed.Earlier this year, a pregnant 14-year-old girl was found dead in a house with her common-law husband. The couple were together since she was 12 years old; the man was 20 years old.There are many other cases of teenage girls involved in relationships with older men. Bisnauth stated that such incidents should be worrisome to the population, because “our young girls are being robbed at a very young age of their childhood and their innocence”.She stated that the six per cent, although it was small, it was one too many. She stated that in most of these cases, the girls would not have completed their secondary school education and/ or would have been pressured by their families to stay in the unhealthy relationship.Bisnauth added that she was in accord with the report that child marriage contributed significantly to impoverishment, not only in the child’s family but in the nation in its entirety.last_img read more