How to put an end to the practice of female genital mutilation (FGM) through the dialogue and advocacy.

The new project CHAT – Changing Attitude. Fostering dialogue to prevent FGM funded by the European Commission is promoted by L’Albero della Vita Foundation to combat the practice of female genital mutilation, and will work closely with other partners in 5 European countries: Portugal, Austria, Spain, Netherlands, United Kingdom .

The “CHAT” project addresses the issue in a comprehensive manner, working on 3 asset:

  • Encourage the involvement of affected communities and, within them, of those who can have an active role to encourage a change of attitude, through concrete actions of 120 Positive Deviants;
  • Increase the involvement of SMEs and the non-profit sector in raising awareness and combating gender violence;
  • Facilitate co-development actions with the fight against mutilation even with the involvement of embassies and consulates.

Female genital mutilation (FGM) comprises all procedures that involve partial or total removal of the external female genitalia, or other injury to the female genital organs for non-medical reasons.

Key facts

Female genital mutilation (FGM) includes procedures that intentionally alter or cause injury to the female genital organs for non-medical reasons. The procedure has no health benefits for girls and women. Procedures can cause severe bleeding and problems urinating, and later cysts, infections, as well as complications in childbirth and increased risk of newborn deaths. More than 200 million girls and women alive today have been cut in 30 countries in Africa, the Middle East and Asia where FGM is concentrated.
FGM is mostly carried out on young girls between infancy and age 15. FGM is a violation of the human rights of girls and women.

Starting a new dialogue

“Through community dialogues you interact directly with the community, there is no imposing anything, you allow the community to talk and they own the process”.

“To combat FGM, a synergy among international organizations, political and religious leaders, the media, civil society and the medical corps is absolutely necessary for the goal of abandoning this practice within a generation to become reality”.

The project actions are:

  • 4 experts for each of the six European countries that will form the Steering Group;
  • 4 Action Group composed of 24 key players from the community and trained on BCC activities and intercultural communication;
  • 120 Positive Deviants who will be trained on techniques of beneficiaries awareness;
  • more than 2,400 beneficiaries involved by the actions of the Positive Deviants;
  • 90 SMEs and companies formed to CR actions against FGM;
  • 60 migrant associations involved in co-development actions;
  • 6 embassies and consulates involved in the promotion of co-development.

For a total of more than 2,700 people mobilized and 180,000 beneficiaries

The distinctive objectives of the project are:

  • change generated by dialogue and confrontation intercultural approach;
  • beneficiaries and communities as agents of change and  active partnership in all phases of the project sharing best practices.