The UK has made the largest ever donor investment to help end the devastating and harmful practice of female genital mutilation (FGM) by 2030.
International Development Secretary Penny Mordaunt today (Friday 23 November) announced a new UK aid package to support the African-led movement to end FGM and provide better protections for vulnerable girls in some of the world’s poorest countries. The announcement comes ahead of the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women on Sunday.
UK aid will provide an extra £50 million – the biggest single investment worldwide to date by any international donor – to tackle this issue across the most affected countries in Africa.
Evidence shows the work of the grassroots activists and survivors, who have built the largest-ever movement to end FGM, has had results. Thousands of communities across Africa are abandoning the practice, and many countries now have legal frameworks in place and provide women and girls with protection and care services.
That is why UK aid will support community programmes and grassroots campaigners in African countries to carry out work in the community, support women’s organisations and girls’ clubs in schools where they can discuss the issue in a safe space. This will help change the perception of FGM, and boost the push to end the practice by 2030. Whereas previously FGM was seen as an unquestioned norm, it is increasingly viewed as a harmful practice.
International Development Secretary Penny Mordaunt said:
“Somewhere in the world, every seven seconds, a girl is at risk of FGM. Inspirational, courageous African women are leading efforts to end the practice in their own countries, and thanks to them, more communities are starting to abandon the practice.
“But progress is at a critical juncture and we must work to protect the millions of girls that are still at risk of being cut. We also can’t end FGM in the UK without ending it globally.
“I am proud UK aid is supporting the growing Africa-led movement against FGM and empowering women and girls in some of the world’s poorest countries to stand against the practice. Together, we can build a safer, healthier and more prosperous world for every child.”
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