CARE’s Tipping Point initiative focuses on addressing the root causes of child, early and forced marriage (CEFM), promoting the rights of adolescent girls through community-level programming and evidence generation in Nepal and Bangladesh. For Phase 2 (2017-2020), the Tipping Point initiative has utilized learnings from Phase 1 to develop and test a holistic and replicable implementation package.
In just a few years, Tipping Point has made significant progress in mobilizing advocates for girls’ rights and in shifting social norms related to child marriage in Nepal. Although the successes of Tipping Point to date have not fully overcome the many barriers girls continue to face in realizing their potential and achieving agency in key life decisions. There are successes that hold promise for social norm change and girls’ empowerment.
Tipping Point’s approach to social norm change and girls’ empowerment in Bangladesh demonstrated that key activities that disrupt traditional social norms in safe, public environments are effective in shifting attitudes. The project piloted new ways of operationalizing social norm change programming by focusing on positive messages about girls rather than the negative outcomes of child marriage.
This report presents the analyses and syntheses of the Outcome Mapping change stories that were collected in Bangladesh and Nepal during Phase 1 of the Tipping Point. Together, the stories offer a glimpse into the process of change observed at the community level. The progress markers suggest that the project has been effective at rapidly empowering girls in terms of finding their voices and standing up for themselves.
Tipping Point worked primarily with adolescents, but also the people around them. Bringing together adolescent girls was a key approach to empowerment programming. Activities challenging gender stereotypical roles of men and women were designed and implemented under three themes: visibility of girls in public spaces, men in domestic spaces, and public events.
Tipping Point invested in a series of workshops and transformative experiences for staff to support their skills in personal reflection about gender. Tipping Point staff employed ongoing self-reflection around gender, power, sexuality, values, practices, and action that model anti-oppression (based on gender, caste, and other group identities).
The SenseMaker component of Tipping Point’s Phase 1 evaluation helped to validate certain aspects of the project’s Theory of Change and provided new areas of exploration. SenseMaker enabled greater depth of analysis about girls’ lived experiences of gendered social norms – resulting in a better understanding of different subgroups’ perceptions of adolescent girls, the challenges they face, and how they resolve these challenges.
The Tipping Point Community Participatory Analysis Study was designed to deepen understanding of the contextual factors and root causes driving the prevalence of child marriage in particular regions of Nepal and Bangladesh. The three main areas of inquiry offer insights into the vulnerability to child marriage, the specific drivers of the practice, and the dreams and reactions of adolescents affected by child marriage.