FGC is ending through the work of programmes that are based on education and empowerment. Bringing about a change in communities where FGC is practised involves a shift in social norms, and has to be felt throughout the entire community.

Orchid Project and our programme partners all believe that ultimately a community must collectively decide to abandon the practice of FGC, in order for everyone involved to understand that the practice must, and can end. As such, all of our programme partners work at a grassroots level.

Female genital cutting is a harmful practice involving full or partial removal of a girl’s external genitals. It serves no medical purpose and has many harmful consequences.

Julia Lalla-Maharajh OBE was volunteering in Ethiopia when she first came across the practice of FGC, and was galvanised into taking action. Having witnessed for herself how widespread and damaging the practice was in just one country, she returned to the UK determined to help bring about an end to FGC. The Orchid Project gained official UK charitable status in April 2011.

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