Minnesota Female Genital Cutting Prevention and Outreach Project - Minnesota Dept. of Health

Minnesota Female Genital Cutting Prevention and Outreach Project

Working Group


  • International Institute of Minnesota and Minnesota Department of Health
International Institute of Minnesota logo


  • The Minnesota Department of Human Services provided funding for the MDH Refugee and International Health Program and the International Institute of Minnesota (IIMN) to form and co-lead this Working Group.


  • The Minnesota Female Genital Cutting (FGC) Prevention and Outreach Working Group brings together diverse stakeholders to recommend, inform and coordinate FGC prevention and community engagement efforts in Minnesota.


  • Identify gaps in FGC prevention and community engagement efforts among Minnesota communities
  • Identify and develop effective FGC prevention and community engagement strategies for Minnesota communities
  • Identify and develop effective messaging for FGC prevention and community engagement
  • Pursue effective collaborations to achieve prevention and community engagement objectives
  • Develop recommendations for FGC prevention among Minnesota communities


  • Core Working Group: The Working Group, comprised of about 20 core members, will review findings, materials and results produced by the committees. The Working Group will develop recommendations that, once approved by the leads, will become official, public recommendations.
  • Committees: The Working Group will form committees on topics related to the group’s goals. Each committee will be led by a Working Group member and staffed by other Working Group members as well as additional stakeholders invited to participate.

Current Working Group Members

  • Amira Adawe, Minnesota Children’s Cabinet, Governor’s Office
  • Dr. Osman Ahmed (Harare), Community Leader/Health Professional
  • Abyan Bashir, Hennepin County - Child Protection
  • Barite Bati, Community Leader / Health Professional
  • Ellen Frerich, Minnesota Department of Health - Refugee Health
  • Margretta Getaweh, Planned Parenthood
  • Zeenat Haji,Planned Parenthood
  • Amal Hassan, Center for Victims of Torture
  • Mustafa Hassan, African Immigrants Community Services
  • Wilhelmina Holder, Women’s Initiative for Self Empowerment (WISE)
  • Mohamed Ibrahim, Minnesota Council of Churches - Refugee Services, Mankato
  • Rufo Jiru, Community Leader/Educator
  • Adar Kahin, WellShare International
  • Safi Khalif, YIELD
  • Ann Linde (co-lead), Minnesota Department of Health - Refugee and International Health
  • Dr. Stacene Maroushek, Hennepin County Medical Center and University of Minnesota
  • Charlotte McDonald, Department of Human Services - Child Safety
  • Ashley Mitchell, WellShare International
  • Fartun Mohamed, Health Professional / Educator
  • Imam Dr. Hassan Mohamud, Minnesota Da’wah Institute
  • Maryam Nur, Hennepin County - Sheriff’s Office
  • Munira Salad, International Institute of Minnesota
  • Malinda Schmiechen, Aust Schmiechen, PA
  • Micaela Schuneman (co-lead), International Institute of Minnesota
  • Fathia Sero
  • Hassan Ugas, Department of Human Services - Child Safety
  • Chiatuogu Ukaga, Center for International Health
  • Mary Zelenak, Stearns County - Health Protection & Promotion

Graduate Fellow and Interns

  • Esther Mwangi, Graduate Fellow, Working Group
  • Audrey Hanson, Intern, Impacted Communities Committee
  • Ka Her, Intern, Other Professionals Committee
  • Dave Kahat, Intern, Healthcare Committee


  • Impacted Communities Engagement and Education (leads: Wilhelmina Holder and Rufo Jiru)
  • Legal and Law Enforcement (leads: Maryam Nur and Malinda Schmiechen)
  • Healthcare (leads: Dr. Stacene Maroushek and Ellen Frerich)
  • Other Professionals / Broader Community Engagement and Education (lead: Charlotte McDonald)

Provide Input

The Working Group invites health care providers, social service professionals, educators and others to complete a brief survey about your practices and needs in engaging with people who have experienced or are at risk for FGC. Your responses will inform our upcoming recommendations for FGC prevention in Minnesota. Surveys are anonymous unless you choose to provide your contact info. We appreciate your input!

Others who would like to provide input may email Ann Linde or call 651-201-5799. Thank you!

Grant Program

  • FGC Prevention and Outreach Grant Program
    MDH will provide one-time grants to organizations with cultural competence in Minnesota communities that are impacted by female genital cutting (FGC), supporting community-led efforts to educate and inform communities of the health risks and emotional trauma inflicted by FGC practices and the criminal penalties associated with FGC.

For questions about the FGC Prevention and Outreach Working Group or Grant Program, contact:

Ann Linde
Updated Tuesday, October 16, 2018 at 02:22PM