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Kenyan girls apply to a contest after creating app to end FGM

A U.S.-based contest challenges youth around the world to solve global problems through technology

Technovation challenges girls from around the world to solve problems through technology, and this year four Kenyans are submitting iCut to the competition, an app to end female genital mutilation (FGM)

“FGM is a big problem affecting girls worldwide, and it is a problem we want to solve,” Stacy, one of the five teens involved in the project, told Thomson Reuters Foundation News. “Whether we win or not, our perspective of the world and the possibilities it has will change for the better."

Although FGM is illegal in Kenya and not practiced in the community where the app architects live, they have friends who have been cut. They’ve seen at least one girl stop coming to school following the ritual that involves the partial or complete removal of female genitalia.

iCut will connect at-risk girls with rescue centres and provide legal and medical help for those who have already been cut. The app, which is being proposed in one of the most tech-savvy countries in Africa, will have five buttons — help, rescue, report, information, donate and feedback.

More than 10,000 girls from nearly 80 countries have participated in Technovation since it was launched in 2010 by the U.S. based non-profit Iridescent, which empowers youth. This year, there are also finalists from India, Kazakhstan and Armenia.

The contest will run from August 7 to 11 in California.

Christian Children’s Fund of Canada is always excited to hear about projects like these. We believe in empowering youth to create their own positive, lasting change, so they can grow up to reach their full potential. CCFC is also working with partners to raise awareness about FGM in Africa. 

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About Christian Children's Fund of Canada:

Christian Children’s Fund of Canada (CCFC) is a child-centred international development organization and a member of ChildFund Alliance. For more than 55 years, CCFC has worked with children, communities, donors and other partners — changing lives through improved health, education and clean water. CCFC works in 12 countries across Africa, Asia and the Americas, to support more than 700,000 children, youth and community members.