The Department of Media Studies (DMS) at the Faculty of Humanities (FH), Notre Dame University-Louaize (NDU), organized on October 11, 2017, a lecture titled "Child Bride Campaign: Highlights and Outcomes," presented by Maya el-Ammar, communication coordinator at KAFA (enough) Violence & Exploitation.
Assistant Professor at the DMS Dr. Rita Sayyah welcomed the audience, mainly composed of professors and students, introduced El-Ammar, and gave an overview on KAFA’s pioneering role in raising awareness about violence and the different types of abuse against women. Dr. Sayyah said, “Today, the world is celebrating the International Day of the Girl Child. Thanks to KAFA and its effective campaigns, Lebanese girls and women now know that they have a reliable support system in place if and whenever that need should arise.”
For her part, El-Ammar screened the communication stages used by the recent KAFA campaign, mostly focusing on the issue of underage marriages that primarily affects girls.
Stage one introduced audiences across Lebanon to Zalfa (a fictional female character created by KAFA). Zalfa lives in Lebanon and suffers from discrimination, violence, and injustice. El-Ammar explained, “Zalfa highlights a number of questions that KAFA asks, regarding the law to protect women and other family members from family violence.”
Stage two focused on a social experiment that took place in Raouche, Beirut, where two actors, a very young girl and a middle-aged man roamed the corniche dressed up and behaving like newlyweds. “This scene shocked passers-by. Our aim was to grab the attention of both the general public and the political parties concerned.”
Stage three showed a video depicting several girls exposing the double standards that exist in various areas of the country: why is an under-aged girl not allowed to drive, vote, or sign legal documents, yet she is allowed to marry and have children?!
“Currently, KAFA is supporting the drafting of a law that only girls above the age of eighteen can marry. This draft law is still awaiting parliamentary approval,” El-Ammar said.