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Sub-regional meeting on FGM underway in Banjul

Sep 23, 2011, 4:34 PM | Article By: Njie Baldeh

Participants from across the world are meeting in Banjul for a three-day sub-regional forum aimed at strengthening monitoring and evaluation of the FGM programme as well as to develop capacity and accountability of the countries in the sub region.

The forum is well attended and hosted by the Gambia government, and was funded by UNFPA, and UNICEF’s Program on FGMC.

In his official opening statement, Dr Reuben Mboge, Assistant UNFPA Representative, announced that this was an international training monitoring and evaluation forum for the joint UNFPA-UNICEF Program for the accelerated abandonment of FGMC.

“This is the first UNFPA-UNICEF joint programme that combines both headquarters and field offices of both agencies in programming. The two agencies are creating synergy in accelerating the abandonment of FGMC and, at the same time, acting as a catalyst for creating increased understanding and consensus through partnership building globally and in the country. He added that this is an excellent partnership, “and we look forward to seeing more of such within UN agencies”.

According to him, monitoring is a continuous systematic collection of information that informs managers and stakeholders involved in a development project on accomplishments, as well as the efficient utilization of allocated resources.

Dr Mboge said in monitoring we collect and analyse information systematically as a project or programme is being implemented.

He added that an evaluation must provide credible and useful information making it possible to integrate lessons learnt from experience into the decision making process of beneficiaries and donors. In evaluation we compare actual project impacts against the agreed strategic plans.

According to Nafisatou Jobe, UNFPA country representative to The Gambia, over the past years, the UNFPA and UNICEF joint programme to accelerate abandonment of female genital mutilation or cutting has continued to be a major United Nations instrument for supporting national efforts to end the practice.

“Established in 2008, the joint programme intensified its activities in promoting the abandonment of female genital mutilation or cutting in 15 countries including Burkina Faso, Djibouti, Egypt, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Gambia, Guinea Conakry, Guinea Bissau, Kenya, Mali, Mauritania, Senegal, Somalia, Sudan and Uganda.