For us here in the United States, December is a time of joy - spending time with loved ones as the holiday season approaches, ringing in the New Year amongst good friends and preparing for resolutions in January.
However, for girls in Tanzania - this time of year looks much different - and is often when they end up fighting for their life.
In Tanzania, December is known as “Cutting Season.” During this time, girls under the age of 15 will be forced to partake in Female Genital Mutilation. While this ancient practice is illegal, it is done secretly and causes girls to run away from their families each year.
FGM refers to all practices involving partial or complete removal of or injury to the external sexual organs of women and girls for non-medical reasons. The practice is generally carried out with a knife or a razor blade without anesthesia and in non-sterile conditions.
There are financial, as well as cultural reasons as to why so many parents support this horrific practice. The main reason parents force girls to undergo FGM is because when girls are circumcised, their parents have already arranged for them to be married. When the girls finish the initiation, their parents introduce them to their husband, whose family gives them cows as dowry. In some communities in Tanzania, women who have not undergone FGM are victims of social exclusion in the belief that a woman who has been cut demands a higher dowry for her parents and she will be more faithful to her husband.
To avoid this horrific act and time of year- girls often run away to safe houses- one of the ones specifically that Vibrate Higher supports is Mugumu Safe House. This safe house and Vocational Training Centre is a nonprofit organization that fights FGM and child marriage in Tanzania by offering a safe place for girls refusing FGM. They also offer the girls a range of courses during their stay to build their confidence and understanding of independence.
We believe in helping women and people all over the world- which is why proceeds from all of these Vibrate Higher products, go to this amazing organization.
Vibrate Higher Supports Mugumu Safe House: During a time of year that is supposed to be filled with so much love, family, friends and support- these girls are fighting for their lives. We’re on a mission to Vibrate Higher and help others to do the same. Click here to shop the items that help support Mugumu Safe House, or click here to donate directly.
We want to help YOU Vibrate Higher, so that others can do the same.