FGM Community Alert
To safeguard girls & women in Scotland at risk of, or affected by Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) improve their mental health & wellbeing, helping them to fully participate in society. In addition we promote public awareness of FGM & equip professionals with the skills and tools to support change.
Charity information: Dignity Alert & Research Forum (DARF)
Communities have various norms referred to as traditional practices, some of which may be beneficial. FGM is a key example of a custom which is harmful & a form of violence against women and girls. It comprises all procedures that involve partial or total removal of the external female genitalia for non-medical reasons. Women & girls in some ethnic minority communities are known to be at risk of FGM . It is estimated that around 2000 British schoolgirls undergo this process every summer.
FGM can result in emotional & physical scars, this project helps to support & protect girls & women who have been subjected to, or are at risk of FGM. However, the ultimate aim is to stop FGM from happening.
Changes to traditional practices have to happen within the community - by co-operating with community-based groups our aim is to effect positive change & facilitate community social support for the abandonment of FGM through education & campaigning initiatives.
Public education & training
Activities» Promote public awareness of the effects & impact of FGM through community activities.
» Provide training for professionals & voluntary/community organisations so they have the skills to provide support for women who have undergone FGM.
What success will look like
At least 1 training session with professional/community organisations each month. Monthly community sessions (e.g. informational seminars or fundraising/awareness events)
Youth SEMA (Speak, Engage, Multiple Actions) - ad-hoc activities performed by young people
Activities» Empower 16-28 year olds from FGM-practising communities with campaigning skills, advocacy training & awareness-raising of gender-based violence
What success will look like
30 young people trained & working within their community to raise awareness & campaign against FGM.
Our ultimate aim is to protect the rights & the dignity of African women & children by providing them with the education, the legal protection & the support they require to stand up & say no to the gender-based violence inflicted upon them. Our research studies would show these changes.
In addition, we are working to change the attitudes within communities to FGM but this is a very long-term aim & involves working with other FGM campaigners to make a difference!
We are a small organisation & rely heavily on volunteers due to limited funds. There is always a risk that volunteers decide they no can no longer commit the time that we need. We deal with this by continually recruiting & training new supporters.
There is also the risk that we lose the support of the communities we work within given that this is a stimatised & culturally sensitive topic. We deal with this by always being aware of the needs & culture of people we work with.
All supporters receive a bi-annual newsletter and donors will receive a monthly email update.
Budget - Project Cost: £4,200Loading graph....
Amount Heading Description £1,200 Professsional training Holding training sessions for professionals or voluntary organisations £1,200 Community session Holding seminars or awareness-raising events for community members £1,800 Youth SEMA training Training and support for 30 young people to work in their community
At this stage, Edinburgh and Glasgow with a focus on areas with ethnic minority communities. For example in Edinburgh, we work in Wester Hailes in the west of the city. Training for professionals & other organisations takes place across Scotland, depending on who requires it.
Primarily girls & women from ethnic minority communities in Scotland. These women come from a different cultural background & perhaps have less freedom than their Western counterparts. By educating them about FGM & the negative health consequences we will empower them to say no if they haven't already gone through the procedure, thereby upholding their reproductive health & human rights. If they have already been subjected to FGM, we support them so that they feel less isolated.
DARF is the only organisation in Scotland systematically focusing on ending FGM multiple rights-based approaches especially creating awareness & training on FGM & related matters. As a result of this we are able to build close links with the communities affected & make a real impact within Scotland's minority communities.
Read more about the Charity running this project.
Dr. Monica Mhoja
Founder, volunteer & trainer