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Widening Engagement and Support to Tackle the Oppressive Practice of Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting in Chicago North Side (WE STOP FGM/C Chicago North Side).

Award Information

Award #
Funding Category
Competitive Discretionary
Congressional District
Funding First Awarded
Total funding (to date)

Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2021, $300,000)

Legal Name: AHA Foundation Inc (lead partner).

Title: WE STOP FGM/C Chicago North Side


Geographical area: Chicago North Side


Population to be served: The population of Chicago City impacted by FGM/C is estimated at 12,000. The largest FGM/C cluster is in Chicago North Side, where 27% of children and 21% of adults live in poverty.


Chicago North Side is home to approx. 3,450 women and girls impacted by FGM/C, a quarter of whom self-identify as Somali, while 21% identify as Ethiopian and 16% self-identify as Nigerian. Other significant communities include Egyptian, Eritrean, Malaysian and Iraqi. Of those 3,450 impacted 20% are below the age of 15 and at heighten risk of FGM/C practice.


Stakeholders groups impacted include; local community leaders, FGM/C survivors, health, education, social services and police professionals.


Project Partners 

Heartland Health Clinics. Heartland Health Centers are a federally qualified healthcare provider with 18 locations serving Chicago’s north side, including seven school-based health centers. In 2020, Heartland provided care to over 28,000 patients. Its services are open to everyone, including the uninsured. Heartland Health Centers also offer a wide range of outreach services, including specialized refugee and immigrant programs.  

Forma. Forma offers specialized mental health clinical services to women adversely affected by FGM/C in Chicago. 


High-level overview


Typically inflicted on girls between birth and fifteen years old, FGM/C is a horrendous form of child abuse yet, unlike other forms of child abuse, FGM/C is a one off event, not generally performed with the intent to harm, but to ensure girls to conform to specific cultural expectations within practicing communities.


The WE STOP FGM/C program recognizes that ending FGM/C requires a multisectoral approach, bringing together community leaders, FGM/C survivors, health, education, social services and the police. Our program strategy aims to ensure


A high level of community awareness of the health risks of FGM/C, and anti-FGM/C law in the U.S.
Community awareness of where FGM/C survivors and at risk girls can go for support.
Improved access to appropriate medical interventions (physical and psychological) for FGM/C survivors.
Timely and appropriate protection responds for girls at risk.
Meaningful partnership working between multiple FGM/C trained stakeholders.
Local community champions advocating for abandoning FGM/C practices.

Date Created: September 21, 2021