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The Umang project adopts an ecosystem approach to empower adolescents and reduce child marriages in some of the high prevalent districts in Jharkhand, viz. Jamtara (Nala block) and Godda (Sadar Block) over a period of three years. The percentage of women getting married before 18 years of age in Godda is 63.5%, and in Jamtara it is 43.9 % as per NFHS-IV. Considering the severity of this situation, PCI India is implementing the Umang project in those identified districts of Jharkhand in partnership with Jharkhand State Livelihood Promotion Society (JSLPS) and the International Center for Research on Women (ICRW).

PCI India is engaging with a federated structure of Women Collectives (such as SHGs or self-help groups) to enhance their individual and collective agency to empower adolescents. PCI recognizes that mothers are critical to shaping up adolescent girls’ future as they are the close confidantes of daughters in the family to facilitate family and community level dialogues to negotiate against any restrictive social norm. These collectives provide peer support to promote agency, leadership, and voice at the community level. The project capacitates the leaders of cluster level and village federations and the SHGs on the issue of child marriage, its causes and consequences, potential options for engaging young girls and raising demand for systemic support to shift regressive social norms like child marriage.