Young girls from the age of 9 years and above in my village undergo FGM. After the cut, in most cases they don’t continue with education, instead they become deviant and difficult to control as they feel they are mature and can make informed decisions on their own. This is very tragic since most of them end up in early marriages, hence poverty in the society.”Educate a girl child and you educate the whole community”
During the Cut girls are exposed to crowds (both men and women) since FGM is done in public. This is very shameful to the girls and it violates their right to privacy .At birth it brings difficulties among other associated problems.
I fight against FGM by being a good example, I have two daughters in college and they have not undergone FGM. I don’t attend the FGM ceremonies in my community. This has not been easy for my family; we are discriminated against by the community for violating a cultural practice that is generally acceptable within our community. My daughters rarely interact with their age mates because most of them have undergone the cut, and hence to them my daughters are out casts.
Story as told by Sadaf (not her real name)
My wife is circumcised hence she insisted that her daughters must undergo the Cut/FGM. This caused a lot of disagreement and tension in the family given that I was opposed to the idea. I was forced to move the girls to a safe place during that holiday as it was the FGM season. I had to remain firm and after a lot of discussion and sensitization my wife finally agreed to the idea though not fully.
I can now tell you that my girls are all grown and mature to understand the risks involved. They are also helping me in spreading message against this vice and they are doing well in school.Female Genital mutilation has really affected both individuals and families by exhausting resources especially due to complications after the cut
Story as told by Todola (not his real name)