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Tuesday, April 6, 2010

FORWARD calls to make female genital mutilation history

April 1, 2010

Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) is a violation of human rights and poses immediate and long-term health consequences to girls and women. * It currently affects 140 million women and girls. [Source: World Health Organisation] * In the UK alone, it is estimated that over 24,000 girls are at risk of FGM.
Despite this, there remains little awareness, particularly amongst young people, or engagement with communities and families.
Success in reducing the prevalence of FGM can only be achieved by actively working in partnership with communities and families, and empowering young people to speak out.
"Community engagement is a vital to change this complex practice of female genital mutilation. Creating spaces and dialogue to discuss and build skills of community stakeholders will help strengthen change and safeguard rights and wellbeing of affected communities." said FORWARD Executive Director Naana Otoo-Oyortey.
International Zero Tolerence to FGM Day provides an opportunity for everyone to raise their voices to Make FGM History.
FORWARD and its partners will continue to work to make this a reality and to safeguard the dignity and advance the sexual and reproductive health and human rights of African women and girls.

The Foundation for Women’s Health Research and Development (FORWARD) is an African Diaspora women’s campaign and support charity. Our work responds to the need to safeguard dignity and advance the sexual and reproductive health and human rights of African women and girls. We work with individuals, communities and organizations to transform harmful practices and improve the quality of life of vulnerable girls and women.
We envision a world where women and girls live in dignity, are healthy and have choices and equal opportunities to fulfil their potential.

About The Gift
The Gift is a fictive monologue written by Zahrah Awaleh that deals with the realities and horrors of FGM. It gets inside the head of a young Somali woman who is on her way to her FGM reversal operation in a London hospital. In the monologue, she opens her heart to the listener, and in the process restores and reclaims her dignity and self-worth.
PDF file The Gift.pdf (.pdf 79.2 KB)