Dysturb partners with the United Nations Population Fund on the International Day of Zero Tolerance for Female Genital Mutilation

Public Photo Exhibition at the United Nations headquarters in New York and mural-sized paste-ups in the streets of the city


#EndFGM #WomenMatter


Turkana Lake, Kenya, August 2016. In Kenya and Tanzania, Amref Health Africa has been working with Maasai community elders to develop an alternative rite of passage for teenage girls in order to eliminate the practice of female genital mutilation (FGM). The alternative rite of passage has been put into practice since 2012 and enables girls to transition into womanhood. Photos by Dean Bradshaw / CPi Reps for Amref Health Africa


On February 6, 2019, the International Day of Zero Tolerance for Female Genital Mutilation, Dysturb partners with UNFPA, the United Nations sexual and reproductive health agency, to present “Female Genital Mutilation: 68 Million Girls at Risk”, an exhibition of photographs at the United Nations headquarters in New York from Feb. 7 - March 25, 2019 and of mural-sized paste-ups in the streets of the city.

This exhibition covers the geographical scope of the practice, too often thought to be limited to some regions of the world, whilst simultaneously giving space to those who speak out – girls, survivors, activists, educators. Through this pioneering intervention that sheds light on female genital mutilation as a violation of human rights and encourages the international community to end this harmful practice, the partnership is working for a successful and sustainable elimination of FGM.

Female genital mutilation (FGM) is a practice that involves altering or injuring the female genitalia for non-medical reasons, and it is internationally recognized as a human rights violation.

More than 200 million girls and women alive today have been cut around the world and around 68 million girls may be cut if efforts are not accelerated to end this harmful practice.
— UNFPA, New York, 2018.

The exhibited photographers are Nando Azevedo, Edu Bayer, Valentin Bianchi, Karen Paulina Biswell, Andrea Bruce, Kristian Buus, Sima Diab, Simona Ghizzoni, Louise Gubb, Meeri Koutaniemi, Marvi Lacar, Jake Naughton, Per-Anders Pettersson, Laura Salvinelli, Lillian Suwanrumpha, Alexandra McNichols Torroledo, and Riccardo Venturi.

The exhibition at the U.N. is open to the public from February 7 until March 25, 2019.
Free entrance - Mon-Sun from 9:00AM –4:45PM
United Nations Visitors’ Lobby
46th St & 1st Ave, New York, NY 10017


Banjul, Gambia. August 2, 2008. Religious leaders join a circumcision celebration and pray for the girls. Next to them is the Ngnangsimbah, the “cutter woman”. This is the day that Agi (centre), 7, will be recognized by the adult community. In Gambia, 75% of girls between 15-19 undergo female genital mutilation (FGM). Photo by Edu Bayer


An event in the continuation of Dysturb’s engagement for women’s rights

This exhibition marks a new chapter in #WomenMatter, Dysturb’s global campaign of awareness on women’s rights.

#WomenMatter presents women both as resilient and actors of change. Launched two years ago, this campaign includes a series of events, educational programs and public exhibitions that promote the fight against all types of violence against women and highlight the story of women who inspire change.

Within each activation, Dysturb covers the extent of dangers that women face in the fields of economy, health and family, as well as physical and sexual integrity. In contrast, stories of women who are activists, rebels and dreamers are also featured – women who are formidable heroines and defy cultural stereotypes.

The campaign will continue throughout 2019, with the launch of a dedicated magazine and more activations around the world.


Pattani province, Thailand. March 15, 2015. Thai girls walk past Pattani Central Mosque before the evening prayers. Women in the region are encouraged to cut their daughters under the assumption that it will control their sexual urges in adulthood and make them “clean”. Photo by Lillian Suwanrumpha


UNFPA’s efforts to eliminate female genital mutilation

Globally, it is estimated that 200 million girls and women alive today have undergone FGM. Although the practice is declining in some countries where it is prevalent, most of these countries are also experiencing a high rate of population growth – meaning that the number of girls who undergo FGM will continue to grow. It is projected that 68 millions girls face being mutilated by 2030, and that an estimated 3.9 million girls are subjected to FGM every year, with this figure rising to 4.6 million by 2030.

To promote the elimination of FGM, coordinated and systematic efforts are needed by traditional and religious leaders, men and women, youth, health care providers, and FGM survivors and advocates, in order to change the social norms around this harmful practice. They must also address the human rights and the sexual and reproductive health needs of women and girls who underwent or are subjected to this practice.

UNFPA, jointly with UNICEF, leads the largest global program to accelerate the elimination of FGM. The program currently focuses on 17 African countries and also supports regional and global initiatives.



Murals’ Locations


Photographs selection


United nations Headquarters exhibition iN NYC


More activations