International Day of Zero Tolerance for Female Genital Mutilation – Celebrating Heroes and Champions

Today, as we mark the 20th anniversary of the International Day of Zero Tolerance for Female Genital Mutilation (FGM), we shine a spotlight on the unwavering efforts of individuals and organizations dedicated to ending this practice. Among these champions is Fatimata Mamadou Lamine Sy, a beacon of hope and a leader in the fight against gender-based violence, including FGM.

 Meet Fatimata Mamadou Lamine Sy

As the Executive Secretary of the Senegalese Association for the Future of Women and Children (ASAFE), Fatimata has dedicated over a decade to public health and humanitarian efforts, with a strong focus on empowering women and youth. Her journey began with the Association of Youth for Development (AJD/Pasteef), where she led programs to combat violence against women and girls. Her commitment extends beyond program leadership to active participation in raising awareness and advocating for change in a society where women have been historically marginalized.

Fatimata’s Message

Fatimata believes in the power of involving future parents – our youth – in the fight against FGM. She stands firm in her conviction that empowering women and girls is not just a noble cause but a duty of every citizen. With a rich background in social work, public finance and management, human rights, and humanitarian action, she is a force for positive change, recently elected as the deputy mayor of the city of Guédiawaye.

As we reflect on the alarming statistics shared by UNFPA – with nearly 4.4 million girls at risk of FGM in 2024 alone – let’s remember the importance of leadership like Fatimata’s in our collective efforts. It will take an estimated $2.75 billion to eliminate FGM by 2030 in key countries, but with leaders like Fatimata and the support of our global network, we can accelerate progress and ensure no woman or girl is left behind.

Join us in celebrating Fatimata Mamadou Lamine Sy and the countless others working tirelessly to end FGM. Their leadership and dedication inspire us all to contribute to a more equitable and just world.