Blog posts from our network of grassroots activists and research academics
As a young girl in my community no one ever told me the harmful effects of the cut, all everyone spoke about is how you will become a woman and stop being a child. A celebration during the cutting season made someone feel very special because goats and even a cow would be slaughtered for your ceremony. It was every young girl’s dreams.
FGM is no longer a new thing in the Gambia and I’m impressed with the amount of youth involvement and engagement in ending FGM in a generation. Addressing the life threatening and global concern, the Girl Generation has currently a membership of 50 organisations in the Gambia.
Today is International Day to Zero Tolerance against FGM and my plea to fellow youths and especially men is to join this noble cause and stand to be counted in making this world a better place for women and girls. As youths we stand to benefit most by achievement of SDGs, with elimination of harmful cultural practices being key in realization of SDG 5.
For the last 16 days I have witnessed an overwhelming scene on social media of something I thought I was dealing with alone. Female Genital Mutilation. FGM was performed on me at age 5 and I will never forget the event. It is still etched in my mind and when reporter Ludovica Iaccino mentioned she was doing a story about it at the International Business Times.
The consequences of FGM on the health, both physical and psychological, are tremendous. There is a need for health care, concentrated assistance to repatriate the dangerous impact, and also, in many communities, a desperate need to help the women stand on their own feet if they choose to escape the dangerous treatment.
Dr Ugwu, Executive Director, Society for the Improvement of Rural people (SIRP) informed guests at the Obollo-Afor celebration that the formal launch of the FGM Country profile was organized in collaboration with an UK NGO ‘28 Too Many’.