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  1. 1

    Accelerating change by the numbers. 2016 annual report of the UNFPA-UNICEF Joint Programme on Female Genital Mutilation / Cutting: Accelerating change.

    UNFPA-UNICEF Joint Programme on Female Genital Mutilation / Cutting

    New York, New York, United Nations Population Fund [UNFPA], 2017 Jul. 92 p.

    The 2016 Annual Report for the UNFPA-UNICEF Joint Programme on Female Genital Mutilation / Cutting provides two perspectives. This main document, "By the Numbers," analyses progress in quantitative terms, using the Results Framework as a basis. It provides an account of how the budget was allocated and offers profiles of each of the 17 programme countries (excepting Yemen). The profiles present facts on the national context, summarize key achievements, and share operational and financial information.
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  2. 2

    17 ways to end FGM / C. Lessons from the field.

    Jensen J; Diop NJ; Jubero M; Legesse B

    New York, New York, United Nations Population Fund [UNFPA], 2017. 80 p.

    The 2016 Annual Report for the UNFPA-UNICEF Joint Programme on Female Genital Mutilation / Cutting provides two perspectives: The main document analyses progress in quantitative terms, provides an account of how our budget was allocated and offers profiles of each of the 17 programme countries. This companion booklet uses a qualitative and narrative approach to examine more specifically the challenges, complexities and achievements on the ground. It explores the innovative approaches the Joint Programme teams, partners and activists employ to deconstruct the social norms that allow FGM / C to continue in many communities.
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  3. 3

    Coordinated strategy to abandon female genital mutilation / cutting in one generation: a human rights-based approach to programming. Leveraging social dynamics for collective change.

    Gillespie G; De Vita MG

    New York, New York, UNICEF, 2007. [53] p. (Technical Note)

    The coordinated strategy presented in this technical note describes a human rights-based approach to female genital mutilation/cutting (FGM/C) programming. The note aims to provide guidance to programmers who are supporting large-scale abandonment of FGM/C in Egypt, Sudan and countries in sub-Saharan Africa. To provide a more comprehensive understanding of FGM/C as a social convention, this coordinated strategy includes an in-depth examination of the research documented by the UNICEF Innocenti Research Centre in 'Changing a Harmful Social Convention: Female genital mutilation/cutting', Innocenti Digest. Its focus is limited to the social dynamics of the practice at the community level, and it applies game theory, the science of interdependent decision-making, to the social dynamics of FGM/C. This strategy does not cover everything that occurs at the community level, but rather, looks at the practice from the perspective of a particular type of social convention described by Thomas C. Schelling in The Strategy of Conflict. It introduces an innovative approach to FGM/C programming that is intended to bring about lasting social change. (excerpt)
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  4. 4

    Eradication of female genital mutilation in Somalia.


    [New York, New York], UNICEF, [2006]. [9] p.

    Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) is defined as procedures involving partial or total removal of female genitals or other injury to female genital organs. In Somalia, FGM prevalence is about 95 percent and is primarily performed on girls aged 4-11. FGM can have severely adverse effects on the physical, mental, and psycholsocial well being of those who undergo the practice. The health consequences of FGM are both immediate and life-long. Despite the many internationally recognized laws against FGM, lack of validation is Islam and global advocacy to eradicate the practice, it remains embedded in Somali culture. (excerpt)
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  5. 5

    Female genital mutilation / cutting. A statistical exploration.


    New York, New York, UNICEF, 2005 Nov. [56] p.

    FGM/C is a fundamental violation of human rights. In the absence of any perceived medical necessity, it subjects girls and women to health risks and has life-threatening consequences. Among those rights violated are the right to the highest attainable standard of health and to bodily integrity. Furthermore, it could be argued that girls (under 18) cannot be said to give informed consent to such a potentially damaging practice as FGM/C. FGM/C is, further, an extreme example of discrimination based on sex. The Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women defines discrimination as "any distinction, exclusion or restriction made on the basis of sex which has the effect or purpose of impairing or nullifying the recognition, enjoyment or exercise by women, irrespective of their marital status, on a basis of equality of men and women, of human rights and fundamental freedoms in the political, economic, social, cultural, civil or any other field." Used as a way to control women's sexuality, FGM/C is a main manifestation of gender inequality and discrimination "related to the historical suppression and subjugation of women," denying girls and women the full enjoyment of their rights and liberties. (excerpt)
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  6. 6

    Changing a harmful social convention: female genital mutilation / cutting.

    Miller M; Moneti F; Landini C; Lewnes A

    Florence, Italy, UNICEF, Innocenti Research Centre, 2005. [53] p. (Innocenti Digest)

    This Innocenti Digest is intended to serve as a practical tool to bring about positive change for girls and women. It: analyses the most current data to illustrate the geographic distribution of FGM/C and outlines key trends; identifies the principal ways in which FGM/C violates a girl’s or woman’s human rights, including the serious physical, psychological and social implications of this harmful practice; examines the factors that contribute to perpetuating FGM/C; and outlines effective and complementary action at the community, national and international levels to support the abandonment of FGM/C. On the basis of analysis conducted, there is good reason to be optimistic that, with the appropriate support, FGM/C can be ended in many practicing communities within a single generation. (excerpt)
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  7. 7

    Is female genital cutting ethically justifiable?

    Best K

    Network. 2001; 21(2):15.

    Female genital cutting (FGC) or female circumcision is the partial or total removal of the external female genitalia or other injury to the female genital organs. Its prevalence is estimated to be at least 90% in some African and Middle Eastern countries. In such cultures, both women and men often accept FGC. In this perspective, the WHO, UN International Children's Emergency Fund, and the UN Population Fund have stated that FGC causes unacceptable harm and have called for its complete eradication. It has been suggested that these harmful health consequences could be reduced while maintaining the FGC tradition were the procedure performed by trained medical professionals in hygienic settings. However, WHO has advised that FGC, in any of its forms, should not be practiced by any health professional in any setting. According to Dr. Laila Nawar, a regional advisor to the Population Council in Cairo, Egypt, changing beliefs that perpetuate FGC should be the focus of interventions seeking to eradicate this harmful practice.
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  8. 8

    Guidelines for UNICEF action on eliminating female genital mutilation [memorandum]


    [Unpublished] 1994 Oct 31. 11, 10 p. (CF/EXD/1994-009)

    This paper presents an Executive Directive, which provides a background and a description of the strategy of the UN International Children's Emergency Fund (UNICEF) on eliminating female genital mutilation (FGM). It also provides guidance on efforts to end the harmful practice of FGM. The Executive Board in 1990 endorsed that UNICEF address the status of girls and their health, nutritional, and educational needs with a view to eliminating gender disparities. Since FGM is a form of discrimination against women, and UNICEF is firmly committed to respecting cultural differences, they should take a clear position against the practice. The Board proposed directives to develop culturally sensitive strategies and support programs for UNICEF. These include collaborations with regional, national and local non-governmental organizations, professional associations, religious institutions, and governments. In addition, it is recommended that UNICEF Regional Offices should take a lead role in initiating and coordinating programs to end FGM practice. A joint statement from the WHO, UNICEF, and the UN Population Fund on the issue of female genital mutilation is also presented in this paper.
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  9. 9

    The progress of nations, 1996.


    New York, New York, UNICEF, 1996. [2], 54 p.

    This document contains the UN's 1996 assessment that ranks the nations of the world according to their achievements in specific areas of human well-being. The introductory comments by the Executive Director of the UN Children's Fund notes that the ratios between national wealth and social progress are not static and depend upon such factors as history and culture, political stability, the accountability of governments, and the sense of realism and honesty adopted as a country faces its problems. Past successes teach the importance of avoiding complacency in working toward progress in eliminating avoidable human suffering. The six commentaries then cover the major topics of 1) maternal mortality (female genital mutilation), 2) nutrition, 3) health (progress in immunization), 4) education (with data on the number of girls out of school), 5) the Convention on the Rights of the Child (national performance gaps and action to date), and 6) the industrial world (child poverty in rich nations and levels of youth illiteracy, tobacco use, suicide, pregnancy, and injury deaths). The report also includes statistical tables that illustrate 1) social indicators for less populous countries, 2) progress in meeting 1995 goals, 3) statistical profiles, and 4) information on the age of the data.
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  10. 10

    Egypt reimposes ban on FGM.

    PANORAMA. 1998; 1.

    This article discusses Egypt's Supreme Administrative Court's reaffirmation of a legal ban on female genital mutilation (FGM) as a violation of human rights. UNICEF, the World Health Organization, and the UN Population Fund agreed to a joint initiative to decrease FGM within 10 years and eliminate the practice within 3 generations. The international interagency effort aims to assist governments in developing and implementing clear national policies for the abolition of FGM. The Executive Director of UNICEF commended Egypt's clarity and authoritativeness in affirming the rights of women and girls, a stance that will affect conditions also outside of Egypt. The affirmation that FGM is not in accordance with Islamic law will help enormously in ending this cruel, ritualized form of violence against women and girls. The Executive Director recognized that the abolition of FGM would require a long time to achieve, because change involves altering attitudes and cultural norms. The International Planned Parenthood Secretary General congratulated the Egyptian Prime Minister on the public announcement of the ban on FGM. Many countries look to Egypt for leadership in determining how to uphold female human rights.
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  11. 11

    Female genital mutilation: a joint WHO / UNICEF / UNFPA statement.

    World Health Organization [WHO]; UNICEF; United Nations Population Fund [UNFPA]

    Geneva, Switzerland, WHO, 1997. [3], 20 p.

    This document contains the joint statement of the World Health Organization (WHO), UN Children's Emergency Fund (UNICEF), and the UN Population Fund (UNFPA) on female genital mutilation. The introduction to the statement notes that the purpose of the statement is not to criticize or condemn but to allow people to understand the hazards and indignity of harmful practices and to realize that it is possible to give up harmful practices without giving up meaningful aspects of their culture. The next section defines female genital mutilation, describes its classification into four types, identifies its practitioners, gives ages of its victims and reported reasons for the practice, and covers prevalence and geographic distribution. Section 3 details the immediate, long-term, psychosexual, and psychological health complications associated with the mutilation and contains the strong advice that medical practitioners resist the temptation to medicalize female genital mutilation. Medicalization is seen as inappropriate because it lends the practice a certain legitimacy. Section 4 reprints the text of pertinent international human rights covenants, conventions, and declarations that seek to secure the health of women and girls. The fifth section of the statement reviews the general agreement about overall approaches to the problem, appropriate types of national and community action, and strategic considerations. Section 6 covers international approaches and proposes specified actions for the WHO, UNICEF, and the UNFPA. The statement concludes that the active involvement of many parties will be necessary to promote awareness of all of the health and psychosocial consequences of female genital mutilation among the public, health workers, and those who perform the procedure.
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  12. 12

    UN agencies pledge to end female genital mutilation.

    POPULI. 1997 May-Jun; 24(2):4-5.

    Female genital mutilation (FGM) is unsafe, unjustifiable, and based upon misconceptions and myths. Eliminating it will considerably improve the health status of millions of women and children in the developing world, especially in African countries. It will also help to promote human rights and gender equity. The heads of the UN Population Fund (UNFPA), the World Health Organization (WHO), and the UN Children's Fund (UNICEF) have adopted a plan to bring about a major decline in FGM in 10 years and completely eliminate the practice within three generations. The agencies will emphasize a multidisciplinary approach and teamwork within the countries where FGM is practiced and at the regional and global levels. Many women and girls accept to undergo FGM because they fear remaining unmarried. Women are therefore a major part of why the practice is perpetuated. Putting an end to FGM means fighting against the people you are trying to protect.
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  13. 13

    Female genital mutilation ban urged.


    INTELIHEALTH NEWS (ON-LINE). 1997 Apr 10; 2 p.

    In April 1997, the UN announced that the UN Children's Fund, the World Health Organization, and the UN Population Fund have mounted a joint effort to create the crucial momentum to achieve elimination of female genital mutilation. Each year, 2 million girls undergo female genital mutilation, which involves partial or total excision of the external female genitalia usually by traditional practitioners wielding crude instruments. Female genital is a deeply-rooted traditional practice, which many communities believe is essential to initiate girls into womanhood. Other misconceptions include the notion that Islam requires such mutilation and that the practice increases fertility and the healthiness of offspring. The effects of female genital mutilation include pain, infection, urine retention, hemorrhage, death, sexual dysfunction, and psychological trauma.
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  14. 14

    Closing address.

    McDermott T

    In: Female circumcision: strategies to bring about change. Proceedings of the International Seminar on Female Circumcision, 13-16 June 1988, Mogadisho, Somalia, [compiled by] Associazione Italiana Donne per lo Sviluppo [and] Somali Women's Democratic Organization. Rome, Italy, Associazione Italiana Donne per lo Sviluppo, 1989. 127-8.

    The author, UNICEF Representative to Somalia, congratulates the Somali Women's Democratic Organization (SWDO) and the Associazione Italiana Donne per lo Sviluppo (AIDOS) for their efforts in convening the 1988 International Seminar on Female Circumcision held in Mogadisho, Somalia. It is estimated that almost all girls in Somalia undergo female genital mutilation (FGM). That high rate of FGM directly influences the country's high rates of maternal and neonatal mortality. The formation in 1978 of Somalia's National Commission for the Abolition of Female Circumcision was an important starting point in efforts to eradicate FGM. The government has since issued a strong statement of intent to eradicate FGM. That intent is backed by a program of action. UNICEF salutes the success of SWDO in mobilizing political will at the highest levels of government to solve the problem of FGM. Interest and momentum for change must now be sustained. Globally, UNICEF's approach is centered upon the conviction that FGM can be fought by promoting the awareness of the public, of health professionals, and of traditional health workers. The involvement of communities and their leaders is a key factor for success.
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  15. 15

    Liberia-IAC has been reactivated.


    The former national committee of Liberia ceased activities at the outbreak of civil unrest, but as soon as the situation allowed, a group of former committee members and new volunteers held meetings starting in March 1993. However, it is not until 1994 that activities started again in earnest. Thanks to UNICEF, a potential committee leader was invited to the IAC Regional Conference in April 1994, Addis Ababa. There, Miss Patricia Marbey met with other members of the IAC network, notably from neighboring countries, which share similar problems concerning traditional practices. Soon after her return she reorganized the committee. Elections were in August 1994 under the auspices of UNICEF. Officers were elected to key posts for a two-year term renewable only once. The name of the new committee was changed for Liberia IAC National Committee, or IAC-LI for short. Even before it was formally reorganized, IAC-Liberia was called into action to represent a girl who had been forcibly initiated. This affair provided the necessary impetus for the committee to start a sensitization campaign toward the eradication of FGM in and around the capital. (full text)
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  16. 16

    Cooperation by UNICEF in the elimination of traditional practices affecting the health of women and children in Africa (Extract).

    Ngom MT

    In: Report on a Seminar on Traditional Practices Affecting the Health of Women and Children in Africa, organized by the Senegal Ministry of Public Health and the NGO Working Group on Traditional Practices Affecting the Health of Women and Children. Dakar, Senegal, Ministry of Public Health and NGO Working Group on Traditional Practices Affecting the Health of Women adn Children, 1984. 182-4.

    This contribution begins with a statement of praise for the efforts of the Senegal conference, complimenting the conference's recognition of positive and negative influencing practices. Positive practices should be encouraged with arguments and striking examples. Attention is drawn to UNICEF document PRO-71, the product of the 1980 Inter-Organization Consultation Meeting on Combating the Practice of Female Circumcision (FC), through the improvement of women's status, and the elimination of false ideologies such as those related to the necessity of FC for the preservation of female modesty, virginity, and chastity. Further attention is drawn to the efforts of a multi-disciplinary study group on FC set up in Ivory coast. Finally, the readiness of UNICEF to further female and child health development, and growth chart, oral rehydration, breastfeeding immunization, food supplementation, family spacing, and female education developments, are discussed.
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  17. 17

    The Hosken Report: genital and sexual mutilation of females. 3rd rev. ed.

    Hosken FP

    Lexington, Massachusetts, Women's International Network News, 1982 Nov. 338 p.

    This report documents the existence and prevalence in Africa and in other regions of the world of the cultural practice of female circumcision and genital mutilation (FC/GM). This serious problem is examined so that it can be abolished. Until recently the problem was hidden from the public, and most health, government and international agency officials denied that the practices were widespread. In 1979 at a World Health Organization (WHO) seminar on traditional health practices, the problem received international attention. Recommendations made by the seminar participants urged nations to adopt policies to abolish FC/GM, to establish commissions to coordinate activities aimed at abolishing the practices, and to intensify efforts to educate the public and health professionals about the problem. In 1984 it was estimated that 79.97 million women in Africa had FC/GM operations performed at some time during their life. The proportion of women who have had FC/GM operations was almost 100% in Somalia, 90% in Ethiopia, 80% in Sudan, Mali, and Sierra Leone, and 60% in Kenya, Ivory Coast, and Gambia. Information is provided on 1) the extent of the practices, 2) the health problems associated with FC/GM, 3) the 1979 WHO seminar, 4) the history of FC/GM, and 5) the cultural beliefs supporting the practices. Case histories provide detailed information on the practices in 11 African countries, 4 countries on the Arab Pennisula, and 2 Asian countries, including Sudan, Somalia, Egypt, Ethiopia, Kenya, Nigeria, Mali, Upper Volta, Senegal, Ivory Coast, Sierra Leone, People's Democratic Republic of Yemen, Oman, United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Indonesia, and Malaysia. The existence of FC/GM practices in many other countries, including Western nations, is also documented. These practices are also discussed in reference to the depressed status of women in many African countries, and the role of women in these countries is examined in regard to legal matters, education, employment, agriculture, family planning, development, and urbanization. Political factors hindering the abolition of the practices and the hesitancy of international agencies such as WHO, US Agency for International Development, and the UN Children's Fund, to deal with the problem are discussed. There is some evidence that FC/GM operations are being conducted in hospitals in a number of African countries, and efforts must be made to prohibit the introduction of these practices into the modern health care system. Suggestions are provided for action and education programs aimed at abolishing FC/GM practices. An annotated bibliograpy, containing 78 references, is also provided.
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