What is FGM?
Female genital mutilation (FGM) involves the partial or total removal of external female genitalia or other injury to the female genital organs for non-medical reasons.
Is it really a problem here?
It is estimated that more than 137,000 women and girls in England and Wales are living with the impacts of having undergone FGM.
What does it mean for the women and girls affected?
The physical and emotional trauma of FGM often has a devastating impact on the lives of the women and girls affected, ranging from pain, bleeding and infections to complications passing urine, menstruating and giving birth. Alongside the physical consequences, women and girls often experience PTSD, nightmares, flashbacks, depression and anxiety as a result of the trauma they have experienced.
What can we do?
We want to prevent girls undergoing FGM within and outside of the UK, provide support to women and girls who have been affected, protect those who are at risk and educate our community about the traumatic effects of FGM.
Your donation today will help us reach out to survivors in our community, offering them access to the vital practical and emotional support that they deserve. Our service is provided completely free of charge to women and girls aged 13 and over, regardless of ethnicity, religion, cultural or socio-economic background or immigration status. Our aim is to help reduce the debilitating impact that FGM has on every aspect of their lives.
We will use the money raised to enable our outreach team to host a series of workshops, drop-ins and events across the community, offering confidential practical and emotional support wherever it is needed. We will also produce posters, leaflets and digital content, to distribute across the community, raising awareness of our services and the issue of FGM more widely.
If we are able to reach our target, any additional money raised will fund the expansion of the project and the re-launch and expansion of peer group therapy sessions at our confidential Crawley based centre, facilitated by a specialist counsellor.
Who are Rape Crisis Surrey and Sussex?
We are an independent team of female specialists, providing confidential support to women and girls aged 13 and over who have survived FGM, rape or sexual abuse at any time in their lives. Our other services include…
Our counselling support is available to women and girls aged 13 and over who have been raped or sexually abused at any time in their lives and is provided by our team of experienced specialist female therapists.
Our therapy is provided free of charge from our confidential Crawley based centre and our hub in Worthing. We primarily support women and girls from West Sussex and East Surrey, although can accept clients from further afield if they are unable to access support from a local service.
Our counselling model is trauma informed talking therapy, based around a model of empowerment, and is offered in the format of up to a year of weekly 50 minute sessions.
Our helpline is accessible 365 days a year to women and girls who have survived any form of sexual violence. We offer specialised, confidential support, information and referral details completely free of charge. The helpline can be reached on 0808 802 9999 and is open every day of the year between 12 noon and 2.30pm and between 7pm and 9.30pm.
We also offer independent advocacy to women and girls aged 13 and older who have survived rape, attempted rape, assault by penetration or childhood sexual abuse and want to know what is involved if they decide to report to the police, are thinking about reporting and want more information and support reporting to the police, have reported and are going through the Criminal Justice System, or are going to court and want extra support.
Our outreach programme is designed to help us reach women and girls who would be otherwise unable to access our services, via a series of local workshops, drop ins and partnership sessions, as well as to raise awareness of our organisation and the issue of violence against women and girls more widely, via training, prevention and activism across our region.