Leyla Hussein
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Leyla Hussein Co-Founded or Daughters Of Eve which is a non profit organisation set up in 2010 which works to protect girls and young women who are at risk from female genital mutilation (FGM). She is also Chief Executive of Hawa’s Haven which is a collective of Somali women campaigners and community activists who have come together to raise awareness about gender based violence particularly in Somali communities in the UK and the horn of Africa .She is also the newly appointed Community facilitator at Manor Gardens and recently completed a 1 hour documentary film with channel 4 “ The Cruel Cut” on FGM in the UK.

Leyla Hussein has over 11 years of experience in working with women/girls who have undergone Female Genital Mutilation, she has a background as a youth outreach worker and recently has been working as an Independent Training Consultant specialised in FGM. She works now as community facilitator at Manor garden Health advocacy Project and partnered with Maya center, to set up set up a support therapy group for FGM survivors “Dahlia’s Project”, the only existing group in the entire EU. Leyla sits on the trustee board for The Special FGM Initiative Advisory Group and Naz Project London.
Leyla is a qualified psychotherapist and she has recently started working as a Counsellor supporting survivors of sexual violence and other vulnerable children and adults. She practices at a local school.

Leyla Hussein has completed her Post Grad diploma in Psychotherapy in 2010. Currently named for BBC 100 women of 2013.She has been awarded Cosmopolitan Ultimate campaigner Women of the Year Award 2010, in 2011 she won the Emma Humphrey Award ,The Lin Groves Special Award for her work in raising awareness of violence against women and children. Also awarded the 2012 True Honour Award “by the Iranian and Kurdish Women’s Right organisation for recognising her work on preventing honour based violence, protecting victims/survivors and bringing perpetrators to justice

She works closely with the Young Africans and Friends (YAF) group, formed by youth working together to tackle issues that are considered taboo in African communities such as HIV/AIDS and female genital mutilation.
In 2005, as part of the Somali youth forum (SYF) Leyla organised a massive conference that gathered over 400 people as a response to the backlash against Somalis in the UK following the devastation of the London bombings. As young British people of Somali origin, the SYF wanted to portray a more positive image of their community and showcase the talent and contributions of young Somalis.

Leyla Hussein is very passionate about supporting young people and strengthening their voices. Her achievements include:
She runs saviour groups for women/girls who have undergone female genital mutilation ( Dahlia’s Project).
Due to her work with young people, Leyla has been awarded the Ambassador for Peace Prize by the Inter-religious and International Peace Federation. Ambassadors for Peace are individuals who dedicate themselves to promoting universal moral values, strong family life, inter-religious cooperation, international harmony, renewal of the United Nations, responsible mass media, and the establishment of a global culture of peace.

She was invited to Downing Street twice by Mr and Mrs Cameron to take part in International Women ‘s Day alongside high profile British women

Leyla Hussein has spoken at many national/international conferences.

She works very closely with the Metropolitan Police (Project Azure).
In July 2008 she won the Primary Care Trut , “The breaking down barriers award”.

L. H. acts as advisor of the END FGM - European campaign which is supported by Amnesty International, Ireland.

As a strong voice of END FGM - European campaign, she has spoken at the houses of parliament of Vienna, Cyprus and London.

L. H. has been invited to speak on Somali issues on several local, national and international television and radio news programmes including the BBC world radio service, World has your say, BBC Today and Five Live, Universal TV (Somali TV), Channel 5, Al Jazzeera, Islamic channel, BBC 24 and took part in a dispatches documentary on refugees and asylum seekers in the UK.

Featured on a glossy ”Look” and Cosmopolitan magazine and National/local Guardian.

L. H. has visited Senegal (Dakar) as a UK leader on an Interaction Leadership Programme which is an innovative programme of learning, great conversations and action in leadership by committed people of all ages who are passionate about Africa and leadership.
L.H. also sits on the committee Board for Naz Project London organisation and The FGM imitative advisory board UK.

Entries by Leyla Hussein

The Girl Generation - Let's End FGM Once and for All

(0) Comments | Posted 12 October 2014 | (14:22)

11 October, is the International Day of the Girl Child. I can think of no better way to mark this important day than by the launch of The Girl Generation, the Africa-led global campaign to end FGM in a generation.

More than 125 million girls worldwide are...

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Not Sexist to Leave Male Circumcision Out of the Debate and Only Focus on Female Genital Mutilation

(111) Comments | Posted 29 August 2014 | (16:26)

Male circumcision vs. FGM

A common question I am often asked is "Leyla, isn't male circumcision (MGM) just as bad as FGM? Is it not sexist to leave male circumcision out of the debate and only focus on female circumcision?"

Okay. Deep breath. Let...

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Girl Summit Wasn't Just a Celebration

(0) Comments | Posted 1 August 2014 | (23:32)

And now for something completely different: a (mostly) serious and (mostly) optimistic blog. On Tuesday the 22nd of July the Prime Minister David Cameron hosted the first International Girl Summit to mobilise support for the fight against FGM and child, early and forced marriage (CEFM). This was a historical moment...

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Men Versus FGM

(14) Comments | Posted 18 April 2014 | (01:00)

Hold onto your horses, this is not a men-bashing blog; I just want to offer some (hopefully) constructive criticism on why many men shy away from discussing FGM and all other forms of violence against women and girls (VAWG). Before you attack me, I'd like to make it clear that...

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My Pledge: 'I'm a Woman, Hear Me Roar'

(2) Comments | Posted 8 March 2014 | (00:00)

Marking International Women's Day...

I have the privilege to share my thoughts whether it is out of anger, frustration or happiness. Although theoretically I've always known this is a privilege, I have only now understood how precious this freedom is. In my recent work, I met women and girls who...

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Marking V-Day , FGM and Sex

(2) Comments | Posted 14 February 2014 | (09:28)

Remember that old Salt N' Pepa song, let's talk about sex? I was only a kid when it came out but I remember how excited I was over it. At last, some women willing to talk! I barely dared mouth the words in public, let alone sing them out loud,...

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Cruel Cut Aftermath, Space For FGM Survivors

(4) Comments | Posted 6 February 2014 | (09:32)

Today we Mark FGM Zero Tolerance Day - 6 February is a reminder that female genital mutilation is a global issue; it should not, however, be the only day we remember that. Sadly, every minute five girls undergo FGM. If it takes you a couple of minutes to read this...

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Acknowledging the Violence

(4) Comments | Posted 27 January 2014 | (00:00)

First and foremost I want to say a massive thank you to all of you who supported our epetition and helped us reach over 100,000 signatures. The great British public stood with survivors and recognized the importance of this campaign. You have spoken out to say that FGM is child...

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My Love Letter

(3) Comments | Posted 8 January 2014 | (03:43)

"Mummy, a girl at school said she wouldn't sit next to me because I'm not pretty. Is that true?"

I felt a kick in my stomach. I have been telling my daughter that she's beautiful "inside and out" since the day she could lift her head and...

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FGM: A Muslim Issue?

(19) Comments | Posted 23 December 2013 | (00:29)

The making of The Cruel Cut documentary was one of the most challenging tasks I've ever undertaken in my anti-FGM campaigning. My aim has always been to teach the British public the effects of FGM, and how we should all make sure we protect our girls from this vile practice....

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When Is It a Choice?

(30) Comments | Posted 9 December 2013 | (00:00)

Designer vagina, breast implants, butt lift... FGM? You may say, "What are you on about, Leyla?"
I promise you, it's not about FGM... okay, it sort of is. What else did you expect from me?

Did you know that FGM type 1 was practiced in the UK till...

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The Biggest Threat to Society - The Clitoris

(92) Comments | Posted 25 November 2013 | (00:00)

Those of you who know me might think, "Really, Leyla? Do you honestly need another blog about female genital mutilation? You sound like a broken record" and you know what? I actually agree with you. I do wonder why after 11 years I'm still talking about FGM or wonder whether...

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