GRANTS of £4,500 being given out over the last year shows the city council is fighting female genital mutilation, it has said.

A special event was held at Rose Hill Primary School this week to mark a day which called for an end to the crime.

It was held on Tuesday, the same day the United Nations ran initiatives around the world.

Oxford Against Cutting launched a new pack for primary school teachers, which encourages them to talk about the issue and children’s body rights in class.

Tom Hayes, executive board member for community safety, said: “Female genital mutilation is a violation of the fundamental human rights of women and girls; today we renew our commitment to ending it.

“The city council works closely with communities to raise awareness of this hugely under-reported crime and support everybody affected by this abuse. Together we are taking a zero-tolerance approach to FGM and working to end gender inequality”.

Fatou Ceesay, community outreach director for Oxford Against Cutting, said: “FGM is a harmful practice that at least 3.6 million girls are at risk of experiencing in the next 12 months globally. This potentially includes girls in the UK.

“OAC will support teachers to encourage children to talk to teachers, school nurses or anyone they feel safe with at school, if they are worried about FGM or any type of bodily or sexual harm.”

Over the 2018/19 financial year, the council has given £3,000 through the Open Bidding Programme to support Oxford Against Cutting to deliver safeguarding and awareness-raising work for teachers and youth leaders.

It also gave £999.999 through the Oxford Safer Communities Partnership for the same charity to run football workshops for boys to raise awareness of and tackle problems such as domestic abuse and FGM. Another £950 has been paid through the Small Grants Programme.

If anyone is at risk of FGM, in the first instance contact the NSPCC on 0800 028 3550. That is its specialised FGM Helpline, a free 24-hour service for advice, information or support.

They can be emailed on

Alternatively contact MASH, Oxfordshire Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub, on 0345 050 7666 or email

If someone is at immediate risk of FGM call the police on 999.