International Women´s Day

8 Mar

„Help the women in Somalia!“

Today is the International Women´s Day and I think about my sisters in Somalia, about the girls, mothers, grandmothers and all the people in my broken country. It is so difficult to be a woman in Somalia!

98 percent of the girls and women are affected by female genital mutilation there. Violence against women is omnipresent. According to UNHCR, rape is increasing dramatically, especially due to the presence of foreign and Somali military, terrorists and other madmen – sheer anarchy. Raped women are being forced to marry their torturers and particularly in nomad societies, sexual abuse is used to force down the bride price of the chosen girl. Women don´t have free access to medical care and maternal mortality in Somalia is in second place in the world unfortunately. There is no place for young girls in this disastrous education system, just seven percent have access to school education.

From the community of nations, I demand the support for women of Somalia, who belong to the most disadvantaged in the world. Education is a basic human right of all men – even for the Somali women. Invest in schools, in professional training and, if possible, in economy and jobs! Invest in hospitals and ambulant healthcare! Don´t support politicians – they have shown million times that they are not able to solve the problems.


Help the women in Somalia! Please send me your suggestions, how we can help together!




Waris Dirie

7 Responses to “International Women´s Day”

  1. maritza March 9, 2012 at 2:25 am #

    I need help please.

    • warisdirie March 14, 2012 at 5:41 pm #

      Dear Maritza,

      Please email us on and we will try to help you with all you need.
      Desert Flower Foundation

  2. diane314 March 9, 2012 at 5:58 pm #


    Are there any international women and children’s groups operating in Somalia that are having any success? It seems like they always need funds, would it be possible for you to collaborate with a brand like H&M, Top Shop, or Zara to make a special limited edition t-shirt, that is super stylish that would raise money for those organizations? I don’t know much about the nomad societies but it seems like they need to be educated about the importance on health and education for their people. Ideally, for a long-term goal, it would be great if along their route their were makeshift hospitals or “traveling” hospitals where people can get assistance, and if someone was there to speak with the women separately. I’m sure other readers will have suggestions.

    • warisdirie April 13, 2012 at 10:30 am #

      Dear Diane,

      As you know the current situation in Somalia is very difficult, it is almost impossible for to exercise any form
      of political or administrative influence, and it is almost impossible for NGO´s and other international organizations to enter this zone.

      Thank you so much for your support and your suggestion about the limited-edition T-shirt, we will definitely
      think about this great idea!
      You are right about the education, it is the single most important tool in eradication of this torture.Nomad people
      were never educated about FGM, about its terrible consequences and that is why they do not know better.
      I sincerely hope this will change one day!

  3. manuela March 10, 2012 at 10:57 am #

    I don’t know how to help you Waris. There are so many problems in each contry. A lot of women have trouble with their own life every day: with husbands, men, kids, work, money…..BUT, but I saw there is somebody who try to talk about the problem with women in Africa. She is Molly Melching and is one of them. She came to Senegal in 1978. She made an Association “Tostan” like yours . I think we have to do something more throuw more publicity in all of the world. More news at the TV. More journalists have to write everywhere this terrible problem in Somalia. We need sensibility in each country. Nobody knows what’s happening in your Country because nobody is talking about that.
    How we can stop the war? I don’t know.

    • warisdirie April 13, 2012 at 10:10 am #

      Dear Manuela,

      The main aim of my Foundation is to raise worldwide awarness about FGM and so far it has been a great success!
      But you are right, we need to talk more about this problem, raise awarness wherever we go, so every single person
      in this world know that this torture is still happening in Africa and other countries in this world!
      So please raise awarness among your family, your friends so more and more people are aware of this cruel practice!
      thank you so much for your support!

  4. hilda fanta March 18, 2012 at 11:50 am #

    Dear Waris,
    My name is Hilda Fanta. I just read your blog on International Women’s Day. Without knowing I told my students about FGM and about our meeting in 2005 when you received the Two Wings peace price. We were sitting together, and talking, and you asked who the girl was, – my daughtet. You told us about your son, and you made a drawing for us.
    You wrote that somalia needs education.

    We just completed a book on education. The title is “The 7 Principles of Emotional/ Social and Cognitive Intelligent Teaching/Thinking – ESCIT. Neuro-Pedagogy.
    I devoted a page to you and your strife.
    I would really like to invite you to the public presentation of the book on 11th May 2012 at the Wörthersee in Carinthia or for a video message.
    The book helps teachers and professors to teach in a brain-compatible way.

    Words are not enough to express my deepest gratitude and admiration for the work you have done, and still do.
    In February, the FGM Club Carinthia received the Prize for Human Rights Carinthia.
    Hilda Fanta

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