Speaking about issues in our communities is really important and can have really incredible effects. Issues that aren’t spoken about are the ones that exist for the longest time: issues like female cutting (FGM). An African youth campaign called “I Will End FGM” aims to end FGM by starting one million conversations about it. If we talk about this issue and how it has affected us and our communities, more and more people will realise that it really is time to end this incredibly harmful practice.
CASE STUDY: STARTING ONE MILLION CONVERSATIONS TO END FEMALE CUTTING
Laws against cutting are a great first step in ending the practice, but as a society we need to make changes ourselves, too. By having conversations about why cutting is incredibly harmful, we can help to end the practice.
Earlier this year, in July, African youth started a campaign called “I Will End FGM”. The teenagers involved come from all over Africa, including Senegal and The Gambia.
The young activists hope to start one million conversations around the world about cutting. The campaigns aims to encourage everyone to play a part in taking action against cutting – on social media and in daily conversations. Over 200 million girls and women have undergone cutting globally and a further 68 million girls are at risk of cutting by 2030 – that’s one girl every 8 seconds. Young people are asking their peers, parents, and leaders from their communities to talk about cutting. These conversations can include survivors sharing their experiences or people speaking out against cutting.
The campaign wants to end cutting within one generation. There are currently 260 million young people in Africa, the largest African generation yet. This means that there are 260 million of us who have the power to make a positive impact to our world.
The “I Will End FGM” campaign shows show us the importance of starting conversations about issues that matter to us. They show us that we can have an enormous positive impact if we speak out about issues, such as FGM, in our communities. We can really impact other people’s lives for the better and help to end FGM within our generation.
Photo Credit: James Ikpe