The government has announced the launch of a youth led website run by teenagers, to help educate other young adults about female genital mutilation (FGM) and steps they can take to prevent the practice.
The site Everybody’s Business offers videos and interactive guides to help people find out about FGM.
The practice of female circumcision can have serious consequences for women and girls who undergo the procedure, including pain and risk of infection.
The website was set-up by Rosa, the UK Fund for Women and Girls, as part of its six-year initiative across the UK.
The site is one of 17 community projects funded by a government grant, which aims to end FGM and honour- based violence by creating a network of community champions. Over the last year, these groups have reached nearly 20,000 people as a result of 216 events.
Communities Minister Baroness Williams said:
“Women and girls, wherever they are from and whatever their background, have the right to live their life free from violence.
“Government has been clear, religious leaders have been clear – female genital mutilation has no place in our society and we will not tolerate it.
“These community champions have been on the ground educating people about how they can put an end to this horrific practice.
“I hope that young people across the country will take the time to visit the Everybody’s Business website and find out what they, too, can do to help.”
Statistics published earlier in December show that, between July and September 2015, there were 1,385 newly recorded cases of FGM reported by healthcare professionals across England – including 758 newly reported incidences of FGM discovered by healthcare professionals across London.
An estimated 125 million women worldwide are thought to be living with the consequences of FGM – and 30 million girls will be at risk of FGM in Africa over the next decade.
Executive Director of Rosa, Samantha Rennie, said:
“With an estimated 20,000 girls still at risk of FGM in the UK, it remains a severe threat to their rights and safety.
“Rosa is delighted to have been able to engage young people through this website in the fight to end it.
“Female genital mutilation is an extreme form of violence against women and girls. It is a human rights violation and can have a lifelong impact on survivors’ physical and psychological health.”
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