AN Oxford student a cappella group has penned a new charity song to support anti-female genital mutilation (FGM) charity, Oxford Against Cutting.

In the Pink has released their music video 'Together We Stand' today, coinciding with the International Day of the Girl Child and to stand in solidarity with FGM survivors. 

President of In the Pink Roseanna Cawthray-Stern said: "Together We Stand is a call for people to unite against FGM, recognising that it is far closer to home than we often think, and should be everyone's responsibility.

“We hope our music enables OAC to reach out to more people who are affected by FGM and raise awareness of the issue.

"We wrote this song to support OAC in the amazing work they do combating FGM.”

FGM is a harmful cultural practice, involving the partial or complete removal of the external female genital parts for non-medical reasons.

There is a high prevalence in some African countries as well as the Middle East and Asia.

But girls and women in diaspora communities living in the UK are also at risk of being cut, including in Oxfordshire. 

In Oxford, communities that are most at risk of FGM originate from Egypt, Eritrea, Ethiopia, the Gambia, Kenya, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, Somalia and Sudan.

The lyrics from 'Together We Stand' draws attention to FGM by saying: "From eight to 8000 miles away, girls suffer out of sight.

"Her body belongs to her; it’s time to do what’s right.

"Against FGM we will start to unite It’s everyone’s issue, it’s everyone’s fight.”

As well as featuring students from the a cappella group, the music video also shows members of OAC's youth wing, staff members and health professionals working at the John Radcliffe Hospital's FGM-dedicated Rose Clinic.

Doctor Brenda Kelly, consultant obstetrician at the JR and founder of the Rose Clinic said: “FGM can lead to serious and lasting problems for physical, sexual and emotional well-being.

"Many find it difficult to talk about such problems or may not know that help is available.

“At the Oxford Rose Clinic, we have a specialist team with experience in providing sensitive and compassionate care for women and girls living with complications of FGM.”

Speaking on In the Pink’s song, OAC Community Outreach Director Fatou Ceesay said: "We are all working together to protect the next generation from FGM, champions from the Gambian, Sudanese, Nigerian and Somali communities for example, plus medical experts, NGOs, young people and community groups.

“There is no point in survivors only talking amongst themselves about this.

"We won't be able to end the practice and ensure survivors get the support they need unless we all get involved, including men, young people, grandparents and people from all communities.

“I love this new song. I also love the fact that there is a mix of communities who took part in the video, demonstrating that everyone has a role to play to end the practice of FGM.

“We all need to care because FGM is a fundamental breach of human rights and child abuse."