FAHP Launches National Strategic Plan 2022-2026

Forum Against Harmful Practices (FAHP).jpg

By Foday Moriba Conteh

As part of strengthening the organization for the coordination of FGM reduction in the country, thereby influencing zero tolerance, the Forum Against Harmful Practices (FAHP) has on Tuesday 23rd November, 2021 launched its National Strategic Plan for 2022-2016. The official launching ceremony was held at the 50/50 Hall on OUA Drive, Tower Hill in Freetown.

The launching of the Strategic Plan 2022-2026 attracted officials from the Ministry of Gender, Ministry of Information, Irish Aid, Human Rights Commission, political parties representatives and a host of both local and international organizations.

In her address, the Chairperson of the Forum Against Harmful Practices (FAHP), Madam Rugiatu Neneh Koroma, disclosed that the aim of the Strategic Plan is to directly tackle the structural causes of gender-based discrimination and inequality, the transformation of discriminatory social norms and stereotypes and the strengthening as well as support of its membership so that they can deliver equally for women, girls, men and communities.

According to Madam Koroma the launching ceremony marked the willingness of Sierra Leone to join the international campaign on zero tolerance to Female Genital Mutilation, as they launch the FAHP Strategic Plan for 2022 to 2026.

She used the opportunity to thank members of the Forum Against Harmful Practices FAHP) and the Consultant, Edmond Abu and team for preparing such an inspiring and encouraging document, adding that it is hard to believe that this is the last activity for the project that has just ended adding that it had been an intense but very successful year in the work to end FGM in Serra Leone under the Project.

Madam Koroma also took the golden opportunity to thank the Leaders of various  political parties,  including C4C, NGC, Unity Party, PMDC and APC,  for giving FAHP the opportunity and the requisite support to meet with their various Executives and to discuss issues relating to the development of the Strategic Plan document.

The Chairperson disclosed that FAHP will continue to count on all other potential partners present as an organization whose main thrust is to end FGM in Sierra Leone, adding that FAHP started with 13 local Non-Governmental Organizations including International Organizations.
Koroma proudly stated that, FAHP now has a 21 member registered organizations (both local and international) including individuals operating in all the five (5) regions in Sierra Leone.

She said as the country approaches the launch of 16 Days of Activism ending violence against women and girls World-wide, let us equally as a nation take into consideration that these events are very clear for all participating countries- End Violence Against Women and Girls with no reservation on any topic.

The Chairperson further informed that FGM is a traditional institutionalized violence that every politician and political party, parents and all actors responsible for the protection of lives should look into with all seriousness and take appropriate actions to fight against it.

She noted that the launch of the Strategic Plan 2022-2027 marks a roadmap for a more effective and coordinated effort in the fight against FGM.
She cited that this is a time for bold changes, adding that the strategic plan has a clear and concise framework that sets out how they are working towards a strong, collaborative and sustainable movement to end FGM once and for all.

She also said that the plan explains key strategic priorities, adding that there is a handy list of terms and useful definitions for non-FGM advocates knowing and understanding this management and planning tool called Strategic Plan.

“We are already seeing momentum building for change in all regions and the changes that we see are very encouraging, notwithstanding the challenges that we continue  to see since the adoption of Agenda 2030,” she maintained.

She said the endorsement of their Strategic Plan will allow them to immediately ramp up their support for the implementation of the 2030 Agenda.
Koroma went further that FAHP dream big dreams but never forget that realistic short-term goals are the keys to their successes, adding that they will continue to work on building their dreams with the short term goals.
She used the opportunity to call on the Ministry of Gender and Children’s Affairs to kindly approve the National Strategy on FGM reduction so that as a country we can now have a working document involving all actors.

A representative from Irish Aid expressed gratitude to witness the launch of the FAHP National Strategic Plan, adding that they have been working with the organization since its inception disclosing how they also collaborate in national strategic planning towards the reduction of FGM in the country.

She revealed that Irish Aid is focusing on 4 key areas which include Nutrition, Gender, Education and Governance & Human Rights stating that they believe that to empower women and girls they need to outline strategies towards creating an enabling environment for these women and girls.

Other dignitaries present also made statements during the ceremony including the consultant, Edmond Abu, a representative from the Ministry of Information and Communications, representative from the Ministry of Social Welfare, etc.


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