Amy is joined by advocate Mariya Taher to learn more about Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting and discuss firsthand accounts from those affected.
Mariya Taher has worked in gender-based violence for over a decade in the areas of teaching, research, policy, program development, and direct service.
In 2015, she cofounded Sahiyo, an award-winning, transnational organization with the mission to empower Asian and other communities to end FGC. The Manhattan Young Democrats honored her as a 2017 Engendering Progress honoree and in 2018, Mariya received the Human Rights Storytellers Award from the Muslim American Leadership Alliance. In 2020, she was recognized as one of the six inaugural grant recipients for the Crave Foundation for Women. Since 2015, she has collaborated with the Massachusetts Women’s Bar Association to pass legislation to protect girls from FGC. After starting a Change.org petition and gathering over 400,000 signatures, Massachusetts became the 39th state in the U.S. to do so.
Mariya is also an extensive writer in fiction and nonfiction and has contributed articles and stories to NPR’s Code Switch, HuffPost, The Fair Observer, Brown Girl Magazine, Solstice Literary Magazine, The Express Tribune, The San Francisco Examiner, and more.
She graduated with her MFA in Creative Writing from Lesley University, where she received the Graduate School of Arts & Social Sciences Dean’s Merit Scholarship and the Lesley University Graduate Student Leadership Award. She also holds a Master in Social Work from San Francisco State University and a B.A. from UC Santa Barbara in Religious Studies.
Learn more at sahiyo.org