MENU menu
  • Awarded: 2014
  • Issue Areas: Early Childhood to Primary Education · Education · Health · Health Delivery · Human Rights · Peace and Human Rights · Post-Secondary Education · Secondary Education · Women's and Girls' Education
  • Countries Served: Bangladesh · Burkina Faso · Central African Republic · Chad · Dominican Republic · Eritrea · Ethiopia · Guinea · India · Madagascar · Malawi · Mali · Mozambique · Nepal · Niger · Nigeria · Sierra Leone · Somalia · Sudan · Zambia
  • Web:
  • Download Profile Pdf

    About the Organization

    Each year, 15 million girls are married before the age of 18. That is 28 girls every minute – married off too soon, endangering their personal development and wellbeing. Child marriage is a human rights violation.

    Girls Not Brides is a global partnership of more than 500 civil society organizations from over 70 countries committed to ending child marriage and enabling girls to fulfil their potential.

    Members are based throughout Africa, Asia, the Middle East, Europe, and the Americas. They share the conviction that every girl has the right to lead the life that she chooses and that, by ending child marriage, we can achieve a safer, healthier, and more prosperous future for all.

    Stronger together, Girls Not Brides members bring child marriage to global attention, build an understanding of what it will take to end child marriage, and call for the laws, policies and programs that will make a difference in the lives of millions of girls.

    Every year 14 million girls are married as children, robbed of their childhood and opportunity for education.

    GNB unites global leaders and grassroots voices to end child marriage.

    Mabel van Oranje describes GNB as a movement that shares knowledge about what is working, and what is not.

    The United Nations General Assembly has agreed that all member states should pass and enforce laws banning child marriage.

    Ambition for Change

    An end to child marriage in one generation.

    Path to Scale

    Build a Movement

    Member organizations support each other and share learning about effective strategies.

    Mabel van Oranje has been an advocate for freedom, justice, and development for two decades. She was the first CEO of The Elders and led the organization’s evolution into a credible force for peace-building, justice and human rights worldwide. She initiated Girls Not Brides (GNB) and chaired its board of trustees from 2008 to2012. Initially sponsored by The Elders as a membership organization, GNB unites global leaders and grassroots voices to end child marriage. Its member organizations range from the largest international NGOs to community based organizations, filling a void and building a movement, sharing experience and learning from each other. Mabel has been recognized for her leadership in many roles, including co-founder and executive chair of the European Council on Foreign Relations, board and advisory board roles for the Open Society Foundations, Crisis Action, Global Witness, and her roles in launching War Child, Publish What You Pay, Independent Commission on Turkey, and the International Criminal Court. At the time of the Award, GNB had more than 300 member organizations across 50 countries.

    Impact & Accomplishments

    • In November 2014, the United Nations General Assembly agreed that all member states should pass and enforce laws banning child marriage. 116 countries co-sponsored a resolution urging states to take steps to end child, early, and forced marriage.
    • Two United Nations commissions joined forces to issue a comprehensive document outlining countries’ obligations to prevent child marriage.


    Heather HamiltonInterim Executive Director, Girls Not Brides
    Lakshmi SundaramExecutive Director, Girls Not Brides
    Laura DickinsonCommunications Officer, Girls Not Brides
    Michelle WissonDonor Engagement Officer, Girls Not Brides

    Related Content

    Lakshmi Sundaram - Girls Not Brides, August 25, 2017
    Every minute of every day, 28 girls under age 18 are married off against their will. Child marriage has broad and devastating impacts, and a new study from the World Bank…

    See All Awardees →