I am Chelangat Joy from Aloman parish, Kaptum sub county in Kween district. I’m 29 years, married but uncircumcised. I grew up hearing about FGM and I didn’t agree with the practice. I saw how many girls my age suffered with the complications of FGM and I said no to the practice. For years my husband would pressure me into getting circumcised. He would come home drunk and abuse me but I insisted on not doing so.
When I started interacting with the “Rise up” project, I become well versed with the 2010 Prohibition of FGM Act and Children Act. That is when I learnt that FGM is a criminal offense and one can get arrested for engaging in it. Using this new information, the next time my husband tried to get me circumcised, I had him arrested. It served as a lesson for many in the community and I do not regret it.
From that incidence, I have been a point of help for many girls in my sub county. They now come to me to guide and educate them on the several dangers of FGM and early marriage. I also use the times when we are at the grinding mill, fetching water and church to create awareness on this harmful practice. I am slowly observing that there is a change among the girls and women. Education has been another solution I give the girls in my community even those who have had children before.