In our community in Mali, too many girls are cut, but when I emigrated to America I was able to protect my own daughter from this mutilation,” says activist Assetou Sy. “But when she got married right here in New York and gave birth to a girl, suddenly we realized that the problem had followed us here.”
While mostly known for afflicting communities across Africa and parts of the Middle East as well as Asia, the nightmare of female genital mutilation is a reality for too many girls in western countries. Several activists have risen up from within the communities in developed countries to demand action, including Mrs. Sy, whose daughter fought a protracted legal battle to spare her own child, Mrs. Sy’s grandchild, from being cut.
We aim to create a help center for women who need legal, emotional and financial support regarding any female genital mutilation issues. Far from the lonely and costly struggle Mrs. Sy’s own daughter endured, they hope to foster a welcoming environment where families can find the support they need amid communities who understand the delicate balance between preserving what is valuable in a culture and dispensing with what is dangerous. To eradicate FGM through awareness building by openly educating and training practitioners, policymakers, parents and children about the health risks associated with FGM and the infinite scars FGM leaves upon its victims.
“Although some would argue that this is a ‘tradition,’ we must recall that slavery, so-called honour killings and other inhumane practices have been defended with the same weak argument,” said United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon in 2014. “Just because a harmful practice has long existed does not justify its continuation. All ‘traditions’ that demean, dehumanize and injure are human rights violations that must be actively opposed until they are ended.”
As part of a broader global push to stop FGM, we are currently developing outreach programs and other activities to reach isolated and at-risk mothers. Contact us today and ask how you can help.