Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2021, $300,000)
Sanctuary for Families, Inc.
The FGMC Prevention and Intervention Project
Sanctuary for Families (“SFF”), New York State’s largest nonprofit agency exclusively serving victims of domestic violence and other forms of gender-based violence, requests $300,000 over 36 months from the U.S. Office for Victims of Crime to implement the FGMC Prevention and Intervention Project (“SFF-FPIP”), to help mitigate the devastating effects of female genital mutilation and cutting among vulnerable girls in the New York City metropolitan area.
SFF-FPIP would focus on African and other ethnic communities with high prevalence of FGMC in New York City and the metropolitan region, home to an estimated 50,000 at-risk girls. The Project will provide trauma-informed clinical and case management services, leadership development programming, and community outreach. SFF has more than a decade of experience working with FGMC victims and girls at risk of being subjected to the harmful practice, with a staffed African Initiative housed in its Clinical Department for over a decade, and more than 20 French-speaking clinical and legal staff working at our offices in Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, and the Bronx. In the past five years, the Initiative has provided individual counseling, support groups, and case management in French, Arabic, and several major African languages to hundreds of clients; run an African Girls Leadership Group whose participants have spoken at local and national anti-FGMC conferences and rallies; and launched the New York Coalition to End FGM, which has over 70 members including child welfare, public health, medical, law enforcement, and human service officials.
Specifically, SFF will:
Conduct outreach and professional education with partner CBOs, hospitals, schools, and child welfare agencies serving affected communities
Engage teen girls and young women, and older women/community leaders, through two leadership programs that will train them as community advocates
Relaunch the New York Coalition to End FGM, with a focus on expanding membership and engaging more CBOs to identify and sensitively respond to at-risk girls and FGMC survivors
Create and distribute culturally sensitive prevention/safety planning materials
Provide trauma-informed mental health services include individual, group, and family counseling
These activities will be conducted by two multilingual, highly trained clinicians: Mariama Diallo, LCSW, the longtime Director of SFF’s African Initiative, and a Counselor in the Initiative (to be hired), as well as survivor leader consultants to be recruited through the outreach and group activities. All activities can be conducted virtually and/or in-person in accordance with evolving COVID-19 safety guidelines.
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