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A new approach to end Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) in the EU

REPLACE 2 Project Updates: 20th December 2013

Methodological Workshop 2: Portugal, Spain and Italy

Dr. David Beecham travelled to APF, Gabinet and CESIE in November-December 2013 to train partners in the use of Nvivo 10 and to meet the community-based researchers (CBRs) and discuss their experiences of recruiting participants from the targeted FGM affected communities. Spending a week with each partner, David had the opportunity to develop a deeper understanding of the wider issues impacting the various targeted FGM affected communities.  This also provided ample time for partners to discuss issues regarding the progression of the project. David’s first stop was APF (Lisbon, Portugal), where he met CBRs from the Guinea Bissauan community. The CBRs were very engaging and provided an excellent insight regarding the current position of the Guinea Bissauan community, particularly how the economic crisis has had an impact on the gender dynamics within the family. Although the original intention was to train AFP staff in Nvivo 10, a number of CBRs were interested in participating. David was all too pleased to train CBRs in the use of Nvivo, as many were currently enrolled at University and were keen to understand the nature of qualitative research. CBRs in Palermo (Italy) and Gabinet (Spain) were also very interested to know how the data gathered from the focus groups and interviews they conducted would be analysed and used by the Coventry University team. <o:p></o:p>

All partners found the training very useful and noted how the Nvivo software would be useful beyond the completion of the REPLACE 2 project. This is very encouraging and illustrates the value of knowledge sharing, which is a fundamental component and benefit of the EU Daphne programme. David found the experience very rewarding professionally and personally. Visiting partners provided the opportunity for the Coventry team to get a first hand impression of the situation in the various partner countries. For example, in Palermo, CESIE organised meetings with various community groups and organisations providing support and assistance to refugees and migrants from Africa. These meetings provided valuable background information. A meeting with medical practitioners in a voluntary medical centre providing free care for refugees and migrants was particularly insightful, with one GP stating that he has personally examined young girls that have been cut and has been asked by family members to perform the practice on their daughters. Talking to CBRs and professionals offering services to FGM affected communities, has certainly enriched the REPLACE 2 team’s understanding of barriers that the different FGM affected communities face and how these differ depending on their geographical location.