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Every girl in my home underwent Female Genital Mutilation. None went to high school. 

Until me. I am the first to say no to FGM and to complete my education.

I am using my voice to influence others to do the same.

     was in DANGER

It was 2018 and she had just completed 8th grade. She knew the time was near that she would be taken for “the cut,” known outside of the community as Female Genital Mutilation (FGM).

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     was an EXPECTATION

FGM was a family and community expectation.


It's a right of passage to be celebrated, they said. But, deep down Lucy questioned why.


Why did girls need to endure this? What good came from it? Why should a girl have no choice?

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Child Endangerment

3 out of 4 girls subjected to FGM are under age 15

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Severe health risks include:


Health Risks

  • Infection

  • Severe pain

  • Risks in childbirth

  • Fistula

  • Psychological trauma

21 percent undergo FGM

Illegal but still happening

of Kenyan women have been cut

93% of Kenyan women disapprove of FGM

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Correlates with school dropout

of Kenyan girls graduate from high school

23 percent marry before age 18

Correlates with child marriage

of Kenyan females married before age 18

FGM is often practiced as a right of passage signifying a girl is ready for marriage

     what happened
to her SISTER

She was old enough to see what happened to her sister after she went through FGM. How she was married by age 16 to a man who beat her. How she was a mother now and thoughts of completing her education had passed.


Lucy wondered, would her future look the same if she followed the same path?

     wouldn't be ACCEPTED

She confided her worries to friends. They only laughed and said she wouldn’t find a husband if she didn’t undergo the cut. Her mother said not to think about it, accept the way things are. 

Finding no support, Lucy stopped talking about it. She felt the force of a dangerous current pulling her along the only path it knew.

     a door opened

Just as she feared there was no escape, that current was interrupted. 

Her chief gathered the community. Kenya Works came to speak to girls and their families—against FGM. The powerful chief opened this door, there must be hope. 

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At the forum, Lucy learned about the permanent scars FGM causes to a girl’s body and future. Her decision was clear. She would not do it.

Here she found more than information. She found the support to stand against this harmful tradition.

With Kenya Works and her chief in her corner, her parents agreed to honor Lucy’s choice.

      voice became stronger than the ancient        forces trying to hold her back

And so at only 13 years of age, Lucy’s voice grew stronger than the ancient forces trying to hold her back. 

Lucy became the first girl in her family to not undergo FGM.

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She broke with tradition that values girls as property to trade for a bridal dowry.


She broke with the expectation of marrying young and becoming a mother while still a child.


She broke with beliefs that shun education, especially for girls. Lucy broke the cycle that perpetuates poverty and inequality.

Her father told Kenya Works there were two paths—one of FGM and marriage, the other, education. When education costs were out of reach, his hands were tied.


When Kenya Works stepped in with an education sponsorship for his daughter, his choice was clear. Education.

Lucy became the first girl in her family to enroll in secondary school.

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Change wasn’t just inside Lucy’s family. Girls in the community began to seek her advice to escape FGM.


In the four years since she broke through this barrier, Lucy has become a resource, an advisor, a mentor.

She has referred girls to safe centers and enlisted the chief’s support when needed. Her advocacy has led many in the community to speak out against FGM. Including her older sister, who left her abusive husband.

It is 2023 and Lucy has become the first girl in her family to complete high school.


She earned high marks and is taking the national exams.


She will be the first girl in her family to attend college, a milestone for the entire community to celebrate.


All girls need to know the truth about FGM— that it’s harmful to a girl’s body.

As a young leader, I am using my voice to influence others to say NO FGM!

- Lucy


in the campaign to #EndFGM. We want to be sure all girls are free from this violent, high-risk human rights violation.

  • Infection

  • Severe pain

  • Risks in childbirth

  • Fistula

  • Psychological trauma

34 girls who undergo fgm before age 15 (

Extreme Health


Outlawed in 2011, FGM is still widely practiced in certain regions of Kenya.

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Illegal, but still prevalent

34 girls who undergo fgm before age 15 (

Correlates with school dropout

51% of Kenyan girls drop out of school. Girls who undergo FGM are at greater risk.

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3 of 4 girls who have undergone FGM were age 15 or younger.  This constitutes an act of violence against a child.

5 Ways We Are Ending FGM
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JOIN the campaign to #EndFGM and ensure all girls are free from this violent and high-risk human rights violation.


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You can join the movement in a snap! Activate your network and collect donations to #EndFGM.

With easy signup and setup, our campaign tool is built for sharing across social media, text and email!


Be a champion for girls' rights. Help raise awareness about the issues and the campaign to #EndFGM.

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Activate the power of community! Tag @KenyaWorksOrg on FB, Insta and X. Use the hashtag #EndFGM to unite with other human rights champions.

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