My parents would not have cut me if they had the right information, says a Sri Lankan Bohra

By: Anonymous Country: Colombo, Sri Lanka Age: in her 50s Circa 1970s, I was seven years old.   I hardly have any memories of my life during this period and most are vague, but I do remember almost every waking minute of one particular day. I woke up, I guess like any other ordinary day, …

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How Melinda Gates’ Moment of Lift addresses female genital cutting

By Kristin Pepper In December 2019, our book club discussed Melinda Gates’ book, Moment of Lift, and experienced firsthand Melinda’s process ourselves. One of our members knew that the book mentioned female genital cutting (FGC), and asked Mariya Taher, an expert on FGC, to join our discussion using Skype. Just as Melinda looked into how …

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On the path to healing: My journey after experiencing female genital cutting

By Anonymous Country of Residence: United States Every woman that has been cut has a story to tell. I tell my story not to offer a universal account of female genital cutting (FGC), but one that is specific to me. At a young age, I underwent Type II female genital cutting, known specifically as “taharah” …

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We should all speak up against female genital cutting

By Hatim Amiji As a man, I found myself extremely nervous sitting in a circle of ten women at Sahiyo’s Voices to End FGM/C workshop. I had entered what I would consider a sacred space, to share my story related to female genital cutting (FGC), but more importantly, to listen to their stories. The air …

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Calling survivors of female genital cutting and health providers for a unique storytelling opportunity

Apply to be a storyteller here! In November 2019, Sahiyo and StoryCenter will partner with The George Washington University Milken Institute School of Public Health to host a digital storytelling workshop in Washington, D.C. Sahiyo is advocating for the abandonment of female genital mutilation/cutting (FGM/C), while StoryCenter supports organizations in using storytelling and participatory media …

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The complexities of female genital cutting in Singapore: Part IV

Concluding thoughts on the practice in Singapore By Saza Faradilla Country of Residence: Singapore This blog post is the fourth in a four-part series about female genital cutting (FGC) in Singapore. This fourth installment provides a final analysis and concrete methods of engaging with discourses on FGC at the individual, community, governmental and international levels. …

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My mother thought she was saving me with khafz

By Rashida I can recall with crystal clear memory my mother taking me at around age 7 to a dilapidated old Chawl style building in a Bohra Mohalla in Bhendi Bazaar. My mom wore a dark orange saree with a green, white and light orange geometrical design. We climbed up broken wooden steps to go …

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I still don’t get why my mom took me there: A Bohra survivor of female genital cutting speaks out

By Anonymous Country of Residence: India Age: 31 Many communities across the world continue to practice female genital mutilation (FGM). In India, it’s mainly the Bohras, a sub-sect of Shias who practice FGM, also known as khatna. The clitoris and/or labia of little girls is cut or mutilated with the belief that it would curb …

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When I found out my friend had undergone female genital mutilation

By Amy Vaya Country of Residence: Bahrain The first time I ever heard about female genital mutilation (FGM), I was 20 years old. A friend told me about a book she had read called ‘Desert Flower,’ by former model Waris Dirie, who had undergone the procedure as a girl. Even as she described it, I …

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