YouTubers use FGM ‘cuts’ to help raise awareness

New research has found that only a third of British adults are aware of the long-term effects of female genital mutilation

Ryan Ramgobin
Friday 29 July 2016 12:51 BST
Brutal Cut montage

There are at least 200 million women and girls alive today in 30 countries that have undergone female genital mutilation.

44 million of those who have undergone the procedure, typically performed on children under the age of five, are still younger than 14.

The procedure is rooted in patriarchal notions of purity, modesty and appearance; but health effects include infections, chronic pain, infertility, complications during menstruation and childbirth and potentially fatal vaginal bleeding.

Only a third of British adults are aware of these long-term effects according to new research by ActionAid UK and ActionAid Kenya.

The research has been launched ahead of the start of the cutting season in Kenya where more than a quarter of girls are at risk of the procedure; and can be as high as 75% in rural areas like the Kongelai.

Celebrity and YouTube stars have teamed up with ActionAid to disrupt the internet and social spaces in order to raise awareness of the issue.

Girish Menon, Chief Executive of the charity ActionAid said: “FGM is one of the most serious violations of human rights and a horrific form of violence against women.”

“In Kenya, FGM can rob girls from a lifetime of choices, they may be forced to drop out of school, marry early and face significant long term health problems.”

“That’s why ActionAid is raising awareness of the effects of FGM and calling on the public to support our work providing safe centres for local women’s rights groups and girls at risk of FGM in Kenya.”

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