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Promoting Women’s Right to Bodily Integrity


Rosaline Gollo is the founder of Waso Hope, a non-profit Community-Based Organization (CBO) at the forefront of advocating for the plight of the Pastoralist women and girls in Isiolo County, Nigeria.


This paper discusses female genital mutilation (FGM) and the fight against it in Isiolo County, Kenya.

The Problem

  • FGM is a violation of women’s rights and a form of discrimination.
  • Isiolo County has a high rate of FGM, with 65% of girls estimated to have undergone it.
  • Proponents of FGM misuse religious texts to justify the practice.

The Organization

  • The author’s organization, Waso Hope, is a community-based group working to end FGM in Isiolo County.

Efforts to End FGM

  • Waso Hope raises awareness about the dangers of FGM through educational programs and media campaigns.
  • They work with local Muslim leaders to counter misinterpretations of religious texts.
  • The organization empowers girls by providing them with dignity kits and education about their rights.
  • Waso Hope has successfully re-educated some traditional circumcisers who have stopped the practice.

Challenges

  • Establishing a rescue center for FGM survivors has been difficult due to lack of funding.

Recommendations

  • Provide alternative livelihoods for traditional circumcisers to reduce their dependence on FGM income.
  • Create better referral systems to identify areas where FGM is still practiced and connect survivors with support.
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