At University: Training of students on FGM/C in 5 European countries: First steps

According to EIGE, an estimated 500,000 women and girls living in the European Union (EU) have undergone FGM, with further 180,000 girls and women at-risk. Nonetheless, most professionals in contact with them have not be trained on how to better prevent and manage this harmful practice against women and girls. Most European universities so far do not provide training on FGM/C to students of medicine, nursing, law, education, social work or gender studies.

MAP-FGM project is aimed at inserting FGM/C in academic training of future professionals who will be in touch with women and girls who have undergone FGM/C or at risk of being submitted to the practice. universities have started providing courses on FGM/C to students of several Bachelor and Post-graduate Degrees. The contents of MTG will be adapted to each country and every course. Capacity up-grading sessions will also be planned for professors interested in the subject. An evaluation of Knowledge, Attitudes and Practices of all students trained is being carried out to assess the impact of the project on future doctors, nurses, social workers, lawyers, educators, psychologists, gender equality promoters, anthropologists and journalists.

At URJC, contents on FGM/C have been taught to students of 5th and 6th years of Medicine in (URJC) and 4th year of Degree in Gender Equality Studies.  A general screening of all training courses of all targeted degrees was made and Departments and professors were approached to be sensitized about the need to insert FGM/C in in Teaching Guides 2017/2018.

Roma Tre team has offered several training courses to students of different degrees. Namely Fusaschi, Cavatorta and Vitale gave 3 trainings to undergraduate, graduate and Master students of Political Sciences, Public Anthropology and Educational Sciences. Each training lasted 8 hours (1 cfu) and self-reflective discussions took place.

In Brussel, VUB-RHEA gave a training to 3rd year medical students, during the course “Medical Anthropology, on the 10th of March, that focused on the general and medical aspects of FGM (modules II, III and IV of the Guide) 50 students were trained. On March 27th, approximately 70 students were trained on FGM during the course “Gender studies”, using modules II and VIII. In February, four students from various disciplines participated in an interactive lesson on FGM and will produce a communication strategy for the upcoming seminar in Brussels, in June 2017.

In Barcelona, the Wassu Team has implemented 7 training courses to undergraduate, postgraduate and Master’s students from different fields: Medicine, Nursing, Gender and Feminist Studies, Social Work and Anthropology. The trainings have been taught by Kaplan, A., Salas, N., Franco, L. and Mangas, A. Each training has been introduced within different modules of existing subjects to increase knowledge and awareness on FGM/C among students, future professionals, and professors.

The ISCTE-IUL team, composed by Cristina Santinho, Marta Patrício and Ricardo Falcão, gave several training courses, each in 3 hours sessions, to more than 300 undergraduate, graduate and master students of various fields at ISCTE-IUL in Lisbon (Anthropology, Development Studies) and in the Leiria Polytechnic Institute (Nursing, Basic Education, Social Education, Social Work, Communication and Media, Intervention in Educational Spaces, and Sociocultural Intervention)

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