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Rugiatu was an expert in the discussion on Conversion of traditional cutters as a strategy to end FGM. She shared her experience of implementing this method in Sierra Leone.
Members shared the difficulties they have encountered when working with the persons who practice FGM and engaging them in the work against the practice. The first difficulty that they stressed is the actual identification of the cutters. In fact, FGM-practitioners have different identifies and are perceived in a specific way in each community where FGM is practiced. In some communities, such as in Sierra Leone, it is easy to identify them, they may even be called by a specific name:
During the discussion, there seemed to be general consensus within the CoP FGM that the conversion of excisors is not a strategy that would work in isolation, but instead would be effective if part of more holistic community approaches. Members stressed that FGM is a multi-faced societal problem that needs a multi-facet approach, with programmes that reach everyone in the society. They stressed the importance of considering the complex power structures that lie behind the practice. When conversion of cutters into alternative professions is included in this global approach, it needs close monitoring and follow-up to be sure that it is effective.
Members expressed critical voices against conversion as a strategy to end FGM.
Members shared positive experiences of working directly with traditional FGM practitioners.
On the International Day of the Girl, we are proud to launch the Campaign “CoP Voices against FGM” on social media. The campaign aims to garner the experiences of our diverse members who are contributing to anti-Female Genital Mutilation policy and programming in their communities and respective fields.
This international stakeholder dialogue is organized by AIDOS, GAMS Belgium and the END FGM European Network. It is held in the frame of the project “Building bridges between Africa and Europe to tackle FGM”, supported by the UNFPA-UNICEF Joint Programme on the Elimination of Female Genital Mutilation.
We had the pleasure to meet with Dr Ouédraogo when he was in Brussels for our Webinar on Multidisciplinary support to women affected by FGM. We spoke about clitoral reconstruction, the use of new technologies, women’s sexuality and the need for holistic care for women affected by FGM…
Moussé Fall is an Imam working in Senegal and the coordinator of the national Network Islam and Population. This video interview was done in May 2019 as a part of the thematic discussion on Religion and FGM.