Alternative rites of passage have been applauded as an inevitable means of completely putting to end Female Gender Mutilation (FGM).Kisii county gender and youth advocate Edinah Kangwana, on Friday, joined CECOME and Manga Heart Community Based Organizations during a pass-out ceremony for grandaunts that underwent an alternative rite of passage program (ARP).
Edina Kangwana, who also doubles up as the Kisii County minister for administration, noted with concern that the Gusii community is among the communities that traditionally practiced FGM and that this outlawed practice is still practiced in the front of illegal medicalization. According to her, the Gusii community is ranked third nationally among communities that still practice FGM, and that efforts must be doubled up in embracing ARP in a bid to end FGM.
In that meeting, Edina Kangwana appreciated the immense efforts expressed by the two levels of government in ending FGM. According to her, the president’s declaration of zero FGM by 2022 is a great roadmap coupled up with other structures and policies like the anti-FGM policy and the National anti-FGM board. The county government of Kisii, on the other hand, has also created a conducive working environment for various stakeholders to ensure zero FGM by creating formidable policies and structures.
To ensure that this campaign gains momentum, different stakeholders that include; Government agencies, donors, and civil society, have been set to ensure that they develop tools to train and equip young ones with vital information in APR programs by ensuring alternative rites of passage curriculum, trained trainers and professionals in subject matter like teachers, doctors, psychologists gender and culture experts.
Alternative rite of passage (ARP) is an alternative rite of passage to the traditionally outlawed Female Gender Mutilation (FGM). These alongside other delivery tools, the young girls are trained over the holiday and upon completion are certified. A pass-out ceremony, otherwise graduation, is done whereby they are required to do a common but personalized declaration signifying a rite of passage just like FGM.