The U.S. Committee for Refugees and Immigrants’ International Institute of Erie (USCRI-IIE) was awarded funds to administer the One Community Program (OCP) in partnership with the International Institute of Minnesota (IIMN). OCP is a three-year program in Erie, Pennsylvania and Minneapolis/St. Paul, Minnesota that will focus on the Somali community and other refugee and immigrant groups (e.g., Iraqi, Ethiopian, Eritrean) that may be at-risk for female genital cutting (FGC).
The program will first address the gaps in FGC- related health care services in both locations by: (1) increasing service providers’ cultural expertise to treat women with FGC; (2) increasing awareness and knowledge among women with FGC, particularly Somali women, to improve their self-care and inform their decision-making concerning girls who may be at risk of FGC; and (3) increasing women with FGC’s access to culturally appropriate health care by creating a directory of health care providers who have completed the training. The second part of the program will focus on preventing FGC among girls living in the U.S. through a series of empowerment and self-awareness workshops as well as how to better engage men in FGC discussions.