Pope Francis condemns female genital mutilation

Holy Father calls for an immediate end to this cruel ritual

Pope Francis with Father Peter Konteh.

"This practice, which is unfortunately common in various parts of the world, humiliates the dignity of a woman and gravely attacks her physical integrity," Pope Francis said on the occasion of the traditional midday prayer in St Peter's Square in Rome. Read the story here.

A statement that makes Father Peter Konteh, our President of the Desert Flower Foundation in Sierra Leone, very happy. Father Peter feels even more encouraged in his work by the Pope's words. Every time he is in the Vatican, he openly addresses the issue of female genital mutilation (FGM) and this brutal human rights violation. He has a strong supporter in Pope Francis. The Pope and Father Peter Konteh know each other well and are friends. Father Konteh: "We are good friends and think in the same direction. We always care about the poor in our society."

Without Father Peter Konteh, we would not have been able to implement our projects in Sierra Leone, West Africa. We now have sponsorship contracts with 1,500 girls, have distributed 20,000 Desert Flower education boxes to school children and have built three schools for a total of 1,200 children. And: Currently, our fourth school is being built in Hastings near the Sierra Leonean capital Freetown. It will be named African AWEEE School.

But one thing is clear too: we could not have achieved all this without your generous donations. Many thanks for that!

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