Sometimes also known as female circumcision, Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting (FGM/C) comprises a range of procedures from cutting, removing, or sewing closed all or part of the vulva for non-medical reasons. FGM/C is usually done without consent, and can have severe negative consequences on a person’s mental and physical health. For example, FGM/C is often performed in non-sterile environments or with non-sterile or blunt instruments, increasing the chance of serious infection, and sometimes even death. Other harmful effects may include severe bleeding, problems urinating, the development of cysts, sexual problems such as decreased experience of sexual pleasure and difficulty reaching orgasm, severe discomfort or pain during sexual intercourse, as well as complications in childbirth and an increased risk of newborn deaths.
The flower of participation was developed by CHOICE in order to give a better understanding of youth participation. The flower is based on the ‘ladder of participation’ by Roger Hart, however, because a ladder denotes a hierarchical or evolutionary system whereby the highest level is the ultimate goal, CHOICE decided to instead use a flower which we feel better reflects that there are multiple ways to for young people to participate and that the type of participation will depend on various factors. The most important of these factors are: (1) level of training, (2) available time, (3) if the people involved are volunteers or if they are being paid for their time, (4) available funds, and (5) level of investment of adult organizations in all of the above.