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This report presents results from a qualitative, participatory research study investigating beliefs, perceptions and experiences of women affected by female genital mutilation or cutting (FGM/C). The aim of the research was to gain in-depthin sights from women originally from high-prevalence FGM countries, and currently living in and around Westminster. The study used the Participatory Ethnographic Evaluation and Research (PEER) method, and was led by FORWARD, with technical support from the PEER unit in the Options consultancy and the University of Wales, Swansea. The participatory research process allowed women to articulate problems and priorities from their points of view, enabling dialogue on these hard-to-discuss issues. This study addresses questions including:

What is the continuing impact of FGM on the lives of affected women?

How do women affected by FGM perceive and interact with services (especiallyhealth services)?

How do women feel about the practice of FGM, both for themselves and foryounger generations?

Women affected by FGM and their peers have the most extensive knowledge of these issues. Through their direct participation in the research, these and other questions were tackled.

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