Genitally mutilated women have successful clitoral restoration surgery in Colorado

aprile 15 2009, Categorie: Press-Releases
UNLV professor assembling expert team to assist victims of female genital mutilation

LAS VEGAS, April 13– Clitoraid, a non-profit, U.S.-based organization, announced today that on March 27, Dr. Marci Bowers performed the first clitoral repairs ever made in the United States at her Colorado clinic, successfully restoring clitoral functioning to three victims of female genital mutilation (FGM) currently residing in the United States.

In a related development, Dr. Larry Ashley of the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, has accepted the task of assembling a team of experts to design a protocol that will help additional millions of FGM victims.

Clitoraid, which is spearheading these efforts, was founded by Rael, who is also the founder and leader of the International Raelian Movement. With Clitoraid’s assistance, scores of African women are already signing up for the procedure that restores the organ of sexual pleasure.

Dr. Bowers offered to help Clitoraid's team about a year ago. After being trained by Dr. Pierre Foldes, the French surgeon who developed the new restoration technique in Paris, she decided to allocate time for operating on genitally mutilated women living in the United States. She also volunteered to perform such surgeries at The Pleasure Hospital, also known as Kamkaso Hospital, in Burkino Faso, Africa, which is currently under construction through Clitoraid fundraising efforts. Thousands of women are awaiting the hospital's completion so they can have the surgery.

In the meantime, Clitoraid is lining up pre-surgical and post-surgical counseling as an adjunct to the procedure.

"After meeting with the desperate women before and after the operation in Colorado that entirely restored their sexuality, we realized that helping them with surgery wasn't enough," said Dr. Brigitte Boisselier, president of Clitoraid. "Their psychological scars are at least as deep as the physical scars treated through surgery, and there's no need to say how thrilled we were when we received an inquiry from Dr. Ashley. After our first meeting, he agreed to put a team together to help these mutilated women psychologically both before and after the surgery!”

Larry Ashley is Addictions Specialist and Associate Professor in Residence for the Department of Counselor Education at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. He specializes in the treatment of combat and sexual traumas, with a primary focus on the training and mentoring of addiction and trauma professionals.

For the Clitoraid collaboration, he will assemble and train a team of community providers and graduate students to provide counseling and therapy for FGM victims before surgery and to follow-up after the procedure.

After his first meeting with one of the women who had the surgery March 27, he confirmed his enthusiasm.

"Of all of the sexual trauma survivors I've worked with, the women who are victims of female genital mutilation are among the most psychologically impacted I've have been associated with," he said. "I feel very fortunate that I can help. There is a tremendous need to have emotional aid available as well as corrective surgery."

New hospital in Africa to offer free reconstructive surgery for genitally mutilated women

marzo 11 2009, Categorie: Press-Releases
Over 200 African women from all walks of life have already signed up for a clitoral reconstructive procedure that will enable victims of female genital mutilation (FGM) to have their sexual organ of pleasure restored.

The surgeries will take place at The Pleasure Hospital, also known as Kamkaso Hospital, in Burkino Faso, Africa. Construction of the hospital is already under way thanks to the fundraising efforts of Clitoraid, a non-profit, U.S.-based organization founded by Rael, who is also the founder and leader of the International Raelian Movement.

“The Pleasure Hospital is for the women of Kama [the native name for Africa],” said
Abibata Sanon, a Raelian guide who has already had the surgery. “It’s a voyage into the deep ocean of women’s love worldwide because it brings hope to millions of genitally mutilated women.”

She added, “Ever since Clitoraid decided to build this facility to help women regain their flower of pleasure, we Kaman women are so excited! It’s such a great gift of love, and we can’t wait to welcome all the doctors and specialists who will be volunteering their time and energy to come here and provide their services.”
One prospective patient is more than 60 years old and has grown-up grandchildren, but to many genitally mutilated women past their prime, age isn’t a factor in the decision to have the surgery.

“I want to do it [have the surgery] and feel the results before I die,” said a retired high school teacher.

Women who sign up for the procedure are also eager to spread the word to others.

“Please build the hospital quickly – I want to discover what the pleasure is and talk about it with those around me,” said a female farm worker from a remote village in the district of Tenkodogo in eastern Burkina Faso. “I don’t have enough money to have the procedure without Clitoraid’s assistance and the reports from women who have already had the surgery get me so excited!”

The hope brought by the hospital is reflected in the glittering eyes of these women. But it also shows in the eyes of some of the local men. Clitoraid volunteers say many husbands are calling, asking the organization to help their wives regain their ability to experience the pleasure of sex.

And they add that with all this excitement growing, the building of the hospital has just passed its most difficult phase – obtaining all the necessary permissions and signatures and related documents. With official authorization to build granted by the town’s mayor two months ago, all the ground work is now completed. The foundation and the ground surface of the building are finished and the walls are now going up.

“Visiting the construction site brings a feeling of beauty and happiness that’s hard to describe,” Sanon said. “Many of us enjoy going there almost every day to visit and to help the male construction workers as much as we can. And it’s so much fun to take a brick and hand it to them saying, 'Here’s one more clit for you to build!’”
She said the atmosphere around the construction site is “like a playground even for the workers,” who get a foretaste of “pleasure-in-the-making.”

“It’s really fun working here with people,” said Pierre Bolduc and Claude Brideau, two volunteer builders from Canada who came thousands of miles to help construct the hospital. “We’re doing things with limited tools, but we’re generating a lot of happiness.”

She said the International Zero Tolerance for FGM Day on Feb. 6 generated additional hope as more people worldwide learned about the Clitoraid project.

“That week, from Gabon to Cote d'Ivoire to Burkina Faso, members of Clitoraid were interviewed by the local media,” Sanon said. “The number of new women calling to have their sense of pleasure restored has increased, and support for the facility now under way is incredible. At this pace, we may need a second pleasure hospital right away!”

With the first hospital now rising and visible, local community interest in the project is also escalating.

“You get the feeling something very nice is happening,” Sanon said. “The chiefs of the two villages that previously owned the land on which the hospital is being built have happily paid a visit to the construction site. And invitations to the mayor and other government officials to freely visit the site will soon be issued.”
She said the day celebrating the hospital’s completion will include a night-long “celebration of pleasure” with Clitoraid volunteers, government officials, the people of the villages and the city of Bobo, and everyone else who supported the project “Adopt a Clitoris,” which raised the funds to make the dream of the new hospital a reality.

“That will be a very big day for us all,” Sanon said.

Clitoraid announces its first 5 clitoral reconstructive surgeries in U.S.

febbraio 06 2009, Categorie: Press-Releases
Genital mutilation victims enjoy new pleasure and dignity, thanks to science.

LAS VEGAS, Feb. 6 – Honoring Feb. 6 as a worldwide “Zero Tolerance Day” for the practice of female genital mutilation (FGM), Las Vegas-based announced that its first five U.S. clitoral reconstructive surgeries will be performed Feb. 17 at the Trinidad, Colo., clinic of Dr. Marci Bowers, who has volunteered her services.

“Five women who endured hideous mutilation in their native African countries will finally recover their pleasure and dignity,” said Clitoraid spokesperson Nadine Gary.

Bowers, a world-renowned surgeon, has appeared on Oprah Winfrey and other TV shows. She is an expert in gender reassignment surgery and other sex-related procedures.

Gary emphasized that these first surgeries are only the preamble to a much larger project – completion of a “pleasure hospital” in Burkina Faso, West Africa, where thousands of FGM victims will have the procedure done for free, performed by volunteer surgeons.

“Rael [], the international spiritual leader and Clitoraid’s founder, launched this project,” Gary said, adding that the revolutionary surgery gives hope to some 150 million FGM victims worldwide. As children or adolescents, each underwent the horror of having her clitoris brutally sliced off by a female family member.

“The intent behind this barbaric practice is to curb the female sex drive at puberty, thus ensuring virtuous, virgin brides and faithful wives,” Gary said. “It’s incredibly painful – done without an anesthetic, using a knife or razor blade or even broken glass.”

The mutilation leaves deep physical and emotional scars, including a sense of shame.

“It even shatters the victim’s marriage, since she won’t be sexually aroused,” Gary explained. “And it slashes her self esteem, which in turn affects her children. That’s why we follow up post-surgery with an intensive sex reeducation program designed by sexologist Dr. Betty Dodson. The reconstructed clitoris needs specific daily stimulation to fully recover its pleasurable function. Meanwhile, the patient’s psyche must be freed from shame, so she can enjoy those newly discovered, wonderful sensations.”

Gary said Clitoraid’s ultimate goal is to permanently eliminate FGM.

“We use science to repair the physical damage, and love to understand not only the victims but the circumcisers, who were sexually mutilated themselves,” Gary said. “We tell them sexual pleasure is noble and virtuous. It’s a fundamental right for all human beings – women included!”

Commending new Dutch technique for restoring penile sensation, Clitoraid stresses importance of telling FGM victims about similar restorative procedure

febbraio 01 2009, Categorie: Press-Releases
ROTTERDAM, February 1 – The Dutch department of Clitoraid ( today expressed its congratulations to doctors from Zwolle and Utrecht who have successfully restored penile sensation to men suffering from spinal chord lesions.
“Bringing back the penile mechanical function to a penis is a beautiful act,” said

Isabel Zabala, spokesperson for Clitoraid. “It will make these men feel whole again and able to experience the sexual pleasure no one should be denied.”
She said Clitoraid is providing similar services to numerous women who have been “circumcised” (genitally mutilated).

“These women have never experienced anything but pain and shame when exposed to sexuality,” Zabala explained. “But now, thanks to a technique developed by a French surgeon, it’s possible to restore their sense of pleasure and their dignity. Clitoraid wants to provide such restoration to as many women as possible.”

She said Clitoraid is a U.S.-based nonprofit organization with worldwide volunteers who promote the procedure. A primary organizational goal is to inform the black and African communities where female genital mutilation is still prevalent.
Zabala said Clitoraid is also building a hospital in the African nation of Burkina Faso to offer the restorative operation free of charge to all women who would like to reverse the effects of genital mutilation. Sex education will also be offered to counter the psychological damage done by years of shame and guilt associated with sex.

“The goal of Clitoraid’s ‘Adopt a Clitoris’ program is to create real, long-lasting changes for women who’ve been forced to undergo clitoral excision – genital mutilation – against their will,” Zabala said. “To rebuild the clitoris, a local anesthetic is used to prevent the patient from experiencing pain when the surgeon uncovers the root of the original organ, which is still there despite the mutilation. That root and the surrounding tissues will become the new clitoris.”

She said recovery from the procedure typically takes about six weeks “to completely heal, with genital normality restored and sexual pleasure the end result.”
To complete construction of the Burkina Faso hospital, Clitoraid is promoting its projects worldwide and asking members of the public to ‘adopt a clitoris.’ (See
“There are big similarities between men suffering from spinal chord lesions and circumcised women,” Zubala pointed out. “Both groups lost feeling in their sexual organ against their will and both consider themselves incomplete because they can’t experience erotic sensation. The big difference between the two is that people who suffer from genital mutilation are victims of a deliberate act performed by primitive people with primitive beliefs. The number of women suffering from such mutilation is enormous. It’s our duty to help these women now that medical knowledge provides a solution.”
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