Over 125 million girls and women worldwide have suffered the devastating health impact of FGM: female genital mutilation. In Mali, one of the world’s poorest countries, over 80% of all women have been cut, usually as children. Infection (including HIV), septic shock, and death can result for girls who are cut; for those who survive, lifelong health complications can result, including constant pain. Because of FGM, many women who have been cut also have great difficulty in childbirth, with higher rates of infant and maternal mortality.
Healthy Tomorrow, based in Somerville, MA, works to end FGM. We work predominantly in Mali through our sister organization “Sini Sanuman” (“Healthy Tomorrow” in the local Bambara language) persuading excisers (those who cut girls) to give up excising and take up another line of work; convincing village elders, parents and grandparents to stop having their girls cut and changing public attitudes through a media campaign consisting of songs and music videos as well as news reports on our activities. We enlist the support of religious, cultural, and health care leaders, and conduct many meetings to educate, and enlist the support of communities. Our petition, the Pledge Against Excision, now has 68,000 signatures and we are using it to convince the legislature to enact a law against FGM. We work in cooperation with UNICEF and other nongovernmental organizations to improve the health and futures of girls and women in Africa.
On Saturday, Dec. 12 and Sunday, Dec. 13, Healthy Tomorrow will hold our Annual Tree and Rug Sale at Unity Church, 6 William St., Somerville (4 blocks from Davis Sq.) from 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Trees are freshly cut, sweet smelling Nova Scotia balsam firs, which happy buyers from last year report as the “best, freshest, longest-lasting tree I’ve ever bought.” Rugs are fair trade, handmade wool or cotton tribal and oriental style rugs from Pakistan, India, Nepal, Afghanistan, and other nations. Rug weaving is a centuries-old tradition; income from rug weaving enables families to earn a dignified livelihood and send children to school. There is a wide range of sizes, styles, and colors. Rugs make a beautiful addition to your home or office, and a perfect gift for someone special.
Free hot cider! Meet our board members and learn more about Healthy Tomorrow.
All proceeds benefit Healthy Tomorrow’s work in West Africa.
For more information, see StopExcision.net.
Fine Rugs and Christmas trees: On Saturday, December 12, and Sunday, December 13 Healthy Tomorrow will hold its annual fine rug and tree sale at Unity Church, 6 William St (along College Ave, 4 blocks from Davis Sq.) from 11am to 4pm. Rugs are fairly traded tribal and oriental style rugs from Pakistan, India, Nepal, Afghanistan and other countries and trees are Balsam firs from Nova Scotia. Proceeds will go to fight female genital mutilation in Mali. To learn more, see StopExcision.net or call (617) 776-6524.