First symposium on genital reconstruction, in Montreal: a moving and informative event full of hope

2월 28 2014, 종류: 보도자료
On Sunday, February 23, around one hundred people gathered for this heartfelt appeal; an intimate conversation on a topic still taboo for some, while almost unknown for many others. The topic was FGM and was brilliantly introduced to us in all its facets, first by Habibata who shared her personal story and how she lived the atrocity of this experience in her flesh as a little girl, a story so visceral that even if words were sometimes not easy to express they did not fail to leave the audience moved to tears on several occasions.

But the excision itself is not just about the infliction of a serious injury to the body. There is also a huge cloud of obscurantism surrounding this practice that can only be described as barbaric the moment we take a short step outside the confines of this tradition. Dr. Samantha Dubray followed with a tour de force presentation on human sexuality and how excision relates to it from a psychological and sexological perspective with an emphasis on how it is now possible for excised women to recover a sense of dignity and psychological stability by going through a procedure that enables them to be whole again for the first time in adulthood.

Indeed, despite the horror described throughout this conference, we were invited first and foremost to celebrate the science that has allowed the development of a minor surgical procedure that gives excised women the opportunity to regain their complete physical integrity. This is what Dr. Harold Henning, the third speaker, explained in detail. He is part of Clitoraid’s team of volunteer surgeons which has already begun to offer this genital surgical reconstruction procedure. Indeed, Dr. Henning will also take part in the official grand opening of the Pleasure Hospital, on March 7 in Burkina Faso, where he plans to operate on five patients every day, while teaching the procedure to local surgeons who will then take over in the wake of this revolutionary scientific breakthrough.

This intimate conference left us equally educated and moved while bringing a hopeful note that this tradition will soon be relegated to the past misunderstandings and mistakes of our ancestors. That is why Maitreya Rael launched the idea of creating Clitoraid and seized on the opportunity presented by this surgical technique to repair this humiliation committed on women and make ineffective and obsolete the tradition of female circumcision.

Furthermore, the Q&A session touched us all to the highest degree when we heard these courageous women in the audience come to us to share their intimate stories, questioning us, expressing their concerns, their suffering, while revealing to us the degree of ignorance and taboo that still surrounds this practice. This was particularly evident when a young woman told us that she didn’t know if she was circumcised.

There is no doubt that we are still a long ways away before a major consciousness shift takes place on a massive scale and before mentalities change, but this first symposium has definitely set the tone by putting forth a revolutionary solution that will give many other women like Habibata the courage to say, "No to excision," as the opening song told us so rightly.

World's 1st Clitoral Repair Hospital for FGM Victims to Open in West Africa on March 7

2월 09 2014, 종류: 보도자료
LAS VEGAS, Feb. 10 - The world’s first clitoral repair hospital for victims of female genital mutilation (FGM), located in Bobo-Dioulasso, Burkina Faso, will open on March 7, according to a statement released today by the U.S.-based, nonprofit organization Clitoraid. Chantal Compaore, First Lady of Burkina Faso, will preside at the ceremony.

The hospital was built with donated funds and through the efforts of worldwide volunteers.

“Having Chantal Compaore support and presence on March 7 is such a wonderful way to celebrate this opening!” said Clitoraid Communications Director Nadine Gary. “She has been a steadfast voice against the horrors of FGM, and we’re honored that she will be there.”
Gary said hundreds of women are already on Clitoraid’s waiting list to have the surgery, which will be free for any woman who wants it.

“Their wait is almost over,” Gary said. She said the new facility, called “the Kamkaso,” which means “the house for women,” has been nicknamed “the Pleasure Hospital,” since the surgery “will restore their dignity as women as well as their ability to experience physical pleasure, which was taken from them against their will.”

Gary went on to explain how the idea of the hospital came about.

“After spiritual leader Maitreya Rael heard about a clitoral repair procedure developed by a French surgeon, he launched Clitoraid and the idea of building clinics that offer free surgery for FGM victims. After the United Nations adopted a resolution banning FGM, there’s been universal agreement that it’s a violation of human rights and the integrity of individuals. And eliminating FGM is essential for women’s health, so governments must keep passing laws against it. But Rael realized that it’s also important to repair the damage already caused to living victims. This hospital is the result of his vision.”

Gary said Clitoraid volunteer surgeons from the United States, Dr. Marci Bowers, M.D., and Dr. Harold Henning Jr., M.D., will perform surgeries at the new hospital and also train other surgeons to do it.

“The goal is to help as many victims as possible have this surgery, which will also help discourage the barbaric practice of FGM,” Gary said. “When its effects can be surgically reversed for free, what would be the point?”

At the AVN in Las Vegas, Clitoraid volunteers dress in sexy nurses outfits to promote a humanitarian cause

1월 17 2014, 종류: 보도자료
Clitoraid, a Las Vegas-based, non-profit organization dedicated to helping victims of female genital mutilation (FGM), has the opportunity to spread the word about its humanitarian cause in what would seem to be a most unusual venue: The Adult Entertainment Expo (AEE) held at the Hard Rock Casino in Las Vegas from Jan 16-17.

Clitoraid's AEE-sponsored booth is being kept by an international team of Clitoraid women volunteers dressed in sexy nurses outfit selling "Clit Candy on a stick". Lia Steinman, Clitoraid's event organizer is delighted to be part of this fundraising event in such a "hot" surrounding. "It is so much fun to be in this environment where sex is not a taboo for a change and where we can make a difference in the lives of genitally mutilated women with our fundraising sweet trays" Lia stated.

Attendance is in the tens of thousands.

Sexual toys, accessories and apparel of all flavors, shapes and forms are everywhere. So when people walk by the Clitoraid booth, our logo must first seem to them like just one more sexual enhancement gimmick. That is, until the picture of the beautiful young African woman featured in the logo catches their attention.

When they stop by the booth to see what it is all about, the Clitoraid representative explain that the organization isn't focused on "enhancing a woman's sexuality," but rather on literally restoring her sexuality surgically to undo the the horrible act of Female Genital Mutilation.

Upon hearing this and additional details, people readily reach for wallets and pocket books and give generously to help open Clitoraid's Pleasure Hospital in West Africa in 6 weeks.

Clitoraid follows liberating Raelian values about nudity and sexuality advocated by spiritual leader Rael, who founded the charity. Rael has vowed to help humanity rid itself of outdated religious values that plague people's sexual lives, especially women's.

MY BODY! MY RIGHT! Conference at Laval University, Quebec, Canada

11월 28 2013, 종류: International NEWS
Tuesday, November 19, as part of the campaign "I love my body , I love my rights", held at the Université Laval in Quebec City, a conference was organized by the Committee Amnesty International of the Faculty of Law. The organizers chose the still taboo theme excision, a subject that is not spoken of, but yet leaves millions of women and girls injured for life.

They invited André Gaumond, Raelian filmmaker, to present his film "Excision , an evil that still hurts" and Aminata and Habibata, two young African women who have undergone female circumcision, to share their experiences. It was an emotional evening.

First, Andre's film reveals a facet of excision that is not visible, the horror lived by
 these women who are circumcised, the trauma remains throughout their life. Through the testimonies of circumcised women and doctors, the film sheds light on so many social wounds that remain in the lives of millions of women, as female circumcision is more than amputation of a small piece of flesh, it's the amputation of dignity and self-confidence.

Link to the film, click HERE

Aminata, who participated in Gaumond's documentary, experienced circumcision at the age of 6. Already affected by polio, she underwent a second handicap through excision. But just like other females both young and old, she did not speak about it, because we do not talk about circumcision. It is normal to be circumcised. It is only as an adult that Aminata realized that excision is not normal when a woman from her village could not have sex on the night of her wedding night, because of the excision. The husband could not penetrate her. They brought the gynaecologist, but he could do nothing. They even brought in the circumciser to remedy the problem. The husband was asked to penetrate her in the following day so the wound would not close. This is when Aminata realized all the evil that circumcision causes. She decided to talk, never be silent, because circumcision is not normal.

Habibata was also excised at 6 years of age. She was taken by force and they cut her clitoris with a razor blade. She cried. She bled. It was painful and pain has always remained in her body and in her heart. When she was with other young women and they were talking about sexuality, about their experiences, she could not say anything, she felt left out, because she did not know the sensations her friends were talking about. She had nothing to say. "Female circumcision is not limited to the clitoris, it also cuts something in your head, it takes away self-confidence," she said. When she learned that a technique was developed to repair the clitoris, she decided to restore her clitoris in order to witness to other circumcised women and say, "It works!". This simple decision, however, has not been so easy, everything was confused in her head. At each step, she relived her circumcision, again and again. Before the restoration of her clitoris, she first had to treat the psychological scars from the excision, but she had the courage to go through it. Then, three months after contacting Clitoraid, she went to San Francisco to meet Dr. Marci Bowers, to undergo surgery and to repair her clitoris, great hope for all circumcised women to regain their dignity!

"Although there is still a lot of social and legal work to do to counteract FGM, there is hope" it's on this note that law professor Louise Langevin, concluded the evening, as she presented the legal the developments that are occurring internationally to fight against this extreme violence done to women.
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