A woman stands outside in a blue dress with white jacket.

Lilian Mayieka, Anti-Female Genital Mutilation Campaign

Lilian Mayieka’s marriage came to an abrupt end when she refused to have her 16-year-old daughter undergo the deeply rooted and traditional female genital cutting procedure. Lilian now raises her three children as a single mother.

In Monyerero, Kenya Lilian has created the Anti-Female Genital Mutilation Campaign to empower girls to make the choice as to whether or not participate in this procedure. Much of the greater community sees this procedure as required for all girls, which entails the surgical removal of the clitoris. Many people in the community believe that this procedure acts as a chastity belt, thus keeping the girls pure until they are destined to be a housewife.

The overall aim of this project is to decrease the rate of female genital mutilation through mobilizing target households, sharing knowledge about health, the procedure and child rights, building capacity about the physical and psychological side effects and initiating income generating activities for girls who have opted out of the procedure. Through the aforementioned activities it is expected that people’s attitudes and behaviors towards female genital mutilation will be challenged and ideally, changed.

Funds from The Pollination Project will go towards acquiring a public address system, training space and equipment to start the income generating activities.

As stated by the UN’s Secretary General, Ban Ki-Moon, “The mutilation of girls and women must stop in this generation – our generation.”