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In 2016, 10-year-old girls made up 2.3 per cent of the population of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). The evidence shows that 10-year-old girls are a key element in the economic growth, social well-being and stability of a country.

This report explains and contextualizes the status of 10-year-old girls in the DRC by outlining their current health and educational needs, their presence in the child labour market, and the DRC’s current child protection measures. The report also includes policy and programming recommendations to improve the health and standard of living of 10-year-old girls.

The findings are clear. Unfortunately, most Congolese girls 10 years of age begin their adolescence with a weight deficit, stomach problems and mental health issues related to chronic malnutrition. They will struggle to complete their education in its entirety and may be exposed to serious social and health problems, including child marriage, early and forced sex, unwanted early pregnancy, physical and emotional abuse, harassment, lack of information about their bodies and their rights, and sexually transmitted infections, including HIV and AIDS.