UNFPA-UNICEF Joint Programme on the Elimination of Female Genital Mutilation
Accelerating the elimination of an extreme form of violence against girls.
Everywhere it is practiced, female genital mutilation (FGM) is an expression of entrenched gender inequality. Girls subjected to FGM are subjected to a systematic form of violence. Survivors often require life-saving care – urgent treatment to staunch haemorrhage, antibiotics to quell infections, surgery to address urinary backup or emergency obstetric care for complicated deliveries.
FGM persists for various reasons, including cultural and economic factors that make it difficult for girls, women and communities to abandon the practice. But it cannot forever withstand the voices of survivors mobilizing to change beliefs. The aim of the UNFPA-UNICEF Joint Programme is to accelerate the inevitable demise of this harmful practice.
UNICEF, in partnership with UNFPA, works to tackle female genital mutilation through interventions in 17 countries: Burkina Faso, Djibouti, Egypt, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Gambia, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, Mali, Mauritania, Nigeria, Senegal, Sudan, Somalia, Uganda and Yemen.
The Joint Programme, launched in 2008 and currently implementing Phase IV, works with the aim of shifting social norms in affected communities while working with governments to put in place viable national response systems. It also prioritizes global movement building of allies working towards eliminating the practice of FGM as its strategic approach.
In 2022, some notable results from the 17 countries covered by the Joint Programme include:
- Over 1.2 million people participated in a public declaration for the elimination of FGM. Following public declarations, 3,663 communities established surveillance structures to monitor and report cases of FGM.
- 281,595 girls and women received services in health care, social welfare, and access to justice to prevent and respond to FGM.
2,454,831 people actively participated in community-level dialogue centered on gender equality and eliminating FGM. Additionally, 440,675 men and boys participated in peer education sessions and dialogues that aimed to promote positive masculinities and foster gender-equitable norms.
660,359 girls benefitted from comprehensive sexuality education and life skills programmes through girls' and youth clubs, specifically designed to empower girls in decision-making and contribute to community transformation.
Over 18.8 people were reached by mass and social media campaigns promoting gender equality and the elimination of FGM.
49,681 religious, community and traditional leaders publicly denounced FGM as a harmful practice.
The Joint Programme is generously supported by the Governments of Austria, Belgium, Canada, France, Germany, Iceland, Italy, Luxembourg, Norway, AECID (Spain), Sweden, the United Kingdom and the United States of America, as well as the European Union.
- Review of technology-based interventions to address child marriage and female genital mutilation (with 13 case studies)
- Phase IV Programme Document for the UNFPA-UNICEF Joint Programme on the Elimination of Female Genital Mutilation
- Proposal for Phase III of the UNFPA-UNICEF Joint Programme on the Elimination of Female Genital Mutilation: Accelerating Change
Delivering and Sustaining in the New Normal to End Female Genital Mutilation (2021 annual report and phase III analysis)
- Empowering Girls and Women to Lead Change: Annual Report 2019
- Joint Programme on the Elimination of Female Genital Mutilation Annual Report 2018
- How to Transform a Social Norm
- Putting It All Together: A Case Study from Nigeria
- Transformation in Action: Tales from Phase II
- Joint Programme to Eliminate FGM Performance Analysis for Phase II, 2014–2017
- Technical Guidance: A Comprehensive Approach to Accelerating the Elimination of Female Genital Mutilation
Social and behaviour change
- The ACT Framework Package: Measuring Social Norms Around Female Genital Mutilation
- The ACT Framework: Towards a new M&E model for measuring social norms change around female genital mutilation
- Participatory Research Toolkit for Social Norms Measurement
- Social Norms Training Package: Norms for change - changing the way we see the world
- COVID-19 Disrupting SDG 5.3: Eliminating Female Genital Mutilation
- Resilience in Action: Lessons learned from the Joint Programme during the COVID-19 crisis
- A Research Agenda to Strengthen Evidence Generation and Utilisation to Accelerate the Elimination of FGM
- Strategic Technical Assistance for Research (STAR) initiative to end harmful practices - partnership with UNICEF Office of Research Innocenti
- Effectiveness of Interventions Designed to Prevent or Respond to Female Genital Mutilation
- Joint evaluation of the UNFPA-UNICEF joint programme on the abandonment of FGM, Phase III: 2018-2021
- Evaluation of the UNFPA-UNICEF Joint Programme on the Abandonment of Female Genital Mutilation: Accelerating Change
- Evaluation Summary of the UNFPA-UNICEF Joint Programme on the Abandonment of Female Genital Mutilation: Accelerating Change (English, French, Spanish, Arabic)