The Fight Against Female Genital Mutilation (FGM)

By Mary Jefcoate

Changing a tradition embedded in culture and religion can be a difficult task but sometimes a necessary one.  

The UNFPA works with small communities, often in Africa, to help stop the tradition of female genital mutilation. 

The UNFPA claims it globally effects 200 million females alive right now. Often, after FGM, it’s too painful to go to the toilet and have sex, sometimes it can even result in death from infection.  

As an effort to stop FGM the UNFPA has joined UNICEF to create a program. Currently in Phase II of the program, their aim is for a “40% decrease in prevalence among girls 14 and younger in at least 5 countries.” 

The results from Phase I of the program showed promising results in minimising this act with “Public declarations of abandonment in over 12,700 communities.”  

They are still looking at years of work within these religious communities, but eventually hope that it will be completely disavowed from all communities.  

(This story is written for a global audience and could be published on