Help keep girls safe


Abigail was 12 years old when she had to choose between her family, the only life she’d ever known, and safety from being cut because of female genital mutilation and possibly bleeding to death.

Female genital mutilation (FGM) is the partial or total destruction of the external female genitalia for non-medical reasons. The cultural practice often has lifelong medical and psychological consequences and can lead to death.

Despite the fact that FGM is illegal in Kenya, many rural villages still carry it out on their young girls.

Abigail ran away from home one day before her turn to be cut. The journey she made barefoot was a long and frightening one. Yet she faced a more frightening fate if she stayed behind.

For most children, home is the safest place in the world. But sadly, for some girls, home can be the most dangerous.

A safe space

Abigail begged her family not to make her go through with the procedure, but they thought that tradition meant her worth as a wife would be greatly reduced if the procedure wasn’t performed.

A girl in my village died after being cut. I was to be cut the very next day – that’s why I ran.” Abigail says.

Luckily, Abigail found safety at an ActionAid-supported safe house. We help the community to provide a safe environment for girls who have fled FGM while also supporting their education.

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Sadly, three million girls under the age of 15 are at risk of female genital mutilation in the next year, many as young as nine.

Your donation this Christmas can ensure we help more women and girls like Abigail and Purity to keep safe from violence, and provide legal, medical and emotional support they need to rebuild their lives.

We also work with local women’s groups who campaign against FGM, and provide education about the health risks and the importance of girl’s education.

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