About Too Young to Wed

Our Mission

Our mission is to protect girls’ rights and end child marriage.

We do this by providing visual evidence of the human rights challenges faced by women and girls. Through powerful storytelling, Too Young to Wed amplifies their courageous voices, building a global community dedicated to ending child, early and forced marriage and inspiring the global community to act. Through our groundbreaking Tehani Photo Workshops and scholarships, we transform influential advocacy into tangible action in the communities where the girls in our images live.

Our Story

Too Young to Wed, a nonprofit organization, traces its official launch back to October 11, 2012 – the first International Day of the Girl Child. Dignitaries from around the world gathered at the United Nations in New York City that day and, surrounded by photographs of child brides as young as 5, pledged to do whatever it took to end child marriage.

But the campaign’s roots stretch back another decade, to Herat, Afghanistan, where visual journalist Stephanie Sinclair was working on a story about girls and women who set themselves on fire. There, she discovered a disturbing pattern among the scarred patients in the hospital’s burn ward: Most of them had been forced into marriage as children. Horrified to learn that child marriage was common in communities throughout the world, Sinclair dedicated the next 10 years of her life to documenting the practice in the hopes of inspiring change.

Sinclair joined forces with the UN Population Fund (UNFPA) to create a transmedia campaign aimed at raising awareness of the problem, supporting girls who are already married and ultimately halting the practice that affects one girl every two seconds—or an estimated 142 million more girls over the next decade. In addition, child marriage is inextricably linked to many of the world’s ills: child and maternal mortality, poverty, gender inequality, and the spread of HIV/AIDS—and ending the practice will help stamp out many of these problems.

 

Our Story

Too Young to Wed’s traveling photo exhibit is the centerpiece of our advocacy effort and features the haunting stories of child brides from Nepal, India, Tanzania, Ethiopia, Yemen, Afghanistan and yes, even the United States. The exhibition continues to travel the world, so please check our events calendar for an updated schedule.

Too Young to Wed continues to partner with the UNFPA as well as other organizations such as Equality Now, the Population Council, Timret LeHiwot Ethiopia and the Canadian and UK governments. Together, we not only advocate for an end to child marriage, but provide on-the-ground support to the girls in the communities where these pictures were made. Our first pilot project is a livelihood initiative in Bahir Dar, Ethiopia that employs women who have escaped child marriage and/or have been trafficked. By producing and selling high-quality soaps, these women generate a sustainable income for themselves and their families.

By increasing the visibility of child marriage, we hope to provoke thoughtful dialogue and ACTION to end this practice and eradicate its consequences. We appreciate your support and contributions may be made through our donate page.

 Contact Us

Too Young to Wed
PO BOX 897
Mohegan Lake, NY 10547
Info@TooYoungToWed.org

Too Young to Wed is qualified for tax exemption under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. For contributions please visit our donate page or mail a check made payable to: Too Young to Wed.

Too Young to Wed Team

Stephanie Sinclair
Founder & Executive Director

Bryan D. Hoben
Policy Counsel

Edie Gross-Evans
Editorial Consultant

Jenean Eichenholtz
Director of Development 

 

 

Board of Directors

Kathy Bonk
Too Young to Wed Board Chair. Co-founder and Executive Director of the Communications Consortium Media Center, which uses communications strategies for policy change.

Stephan Bognar
Too Young to Wed Board Vice Chair. New York Dermatology Group Foundation, a global network of doctors and humanitarian practitioners coming together to improve medical wellness in underserved populations.

Christina Piaia
Human Rights Attorney, Founder and Board President of The Chris Hondros Fund. Formerly staff attorney for the New York City Office of Legal Affairs and Supervising Picture Editor with the Associated Press.

Elizabeth Pratt 
Director of Professional Client Development & Support at Canon USA and Canon Professional Services, a service and support organization for professional photographers and filmmakers.

Stephanie Sinclair
Too Young to Wed Founder & Executive Director, National Geographic photographer.

Robin Lerner
Special Advisor to the Board. President and CEO at Texas International Education Consortium. Formerly Senior Advisor and Counselor to the U.S. Department of State and Counsel for the U.S. Senate Committee on Foreign Relations


Board of Advisors

Judith Bruce
Population Council Senior Associate and Policy Analyst with the Poverty, Gender and Youth program

Donna Ferrato
Founder of the “I am Unbeatable” campaign and renowned photojournalist who pioneered photographic work on domestic violence with her project, Living with the Enemy

Gabriella Gillespie
Author of A Father’s Betrayal, the tale of how she suffered sexual, physical and mental abuse as a child bride in Yemen but was able to escape with her children after 17 years to her birth country, England.

Jean-François Leroy
Founder of the esteemed international photojournalism festival Visa Pour l’Image hosted annually in Perpignan, France

Partners

Ford Foundation
Collaboration in advocacy to end child marriage in fragile contexts

American Jewish World Service
Collaboration in advocacy to end child marriage in post-earthquake Nepal

Department of International Development (DFID), Options UK and Equality Now
The Girl Generation: a five-year campaign to end FGM.

David and Lucile Packard Foundation
Collaboration in advocacy, highlighting African champions working to end child marriage

Government of Canada
One-year traveling exhibition/political advocacy campaign of Too Young to Wed

Humanity United
Collaboration with Alliance to End Slavery & Trafficking (ATEST) on story development and exhibitions

Isabel Allende Foundation
Adolescent Girls Photography Workshops

Population Council
The Adolescent Girls Learning Circle

Samburu Girls Foundation
Adolescent Girls Photography Workshops

UNFPA
Two-year traveling exhibition/political advocacy campaign of Too Young to Wed

US Department of State
Launch of United States Global Strategy to Empower Adolescent Girls

Working Women Journalists, Nepal
Local partner for TYTW Scholarship Initiative