Ending FGM lies at the heart of our work. When girls enroll at the Kakenya Center for Excellence boarding school, their parents or guardian sign a pledge to never permit their child to undergo FGM. In our Health & Leadership trainings, we teach young people about their rights to be free from FGM and the harmful effects it can have on womens' health. We teach both boys and girls about FGM so that the next generation will be united in ending the practice. While many come into the trainings not sure what FGM is, or wanting to undergo the practice to please their parents and begin 'womanhood', we ensure that they know what exactly FGM is, that is is illegal and they are entitled to protection, and that FGM can have negative effects that last a lifetime. We have conversations about why FGM often leads to girls dropping out of school, how it can cause maternal mortality, and why it is improtant for boys and men to stand up against the practice, too.
Traditionally, talking about FGM is a taboo, but from youth trainings to community dialogues, we are starting the conversation, educating about its risks, and empowering people to say “no” for good.