Activist Jaha Dukureh was appointed Regional UN Women Ambassador for Africa in 2018. A survivor of FGM, and forced into child marriage at age 15. Ms. Dukureh dedicates her efforts to support UN Women’s advocacy to end female genital mutilation (FGM) and child marriage in Africa, with focus on mobilizing youth. Ms. Dukureh is the CEO and Founder of the NGO “Safe Hands for Girls” that provides support to African women and girls who are survivors of FGM and addresses its lifelong, harmful physical and psychological consequences. She contributed to President Obama’s administration investigating the profile of FGM in the USA and the subsequent Summit to End FGM at the United States Institute of Peace. Alongside women’s organizations and civil society, she contributed to the Gambian Government’s ban on FGM after youth mobilization and campaigning in the country. She has been the subject of a 2017 feature documentary, “Jaha’s Promise,” which details her life and work to end FGM. Ms. Dukureh was named to the Time 100 list of the most influential people in the world in 2016, and one of the 100 most influential Africans of 2017, by New African magazine for her work as an activist. She was also honoured with the “Human rights activist, Humanitarian of the Year” award at the seventh annual African Diaspora Awards in 2017. In 2018, she was named as one of the top 100 gender global policy influencers by Apolitical, one of the top 10 Africa Changemakers by YouthHubAfrica and was a nominee for the Nobel Peace Prize.
CEO and Founder, Safe Hands for Girls