Waris Dirie

by Anja from Slovenia

My hero, Waris Dirie was born in a nomadic Somali family. Not even she knows the right date of her birth. She is 39 now. At the age of 5 she survived the traditional form of female genital mutilation that kills hundreds of women in Africa every year. For this reason her younger sister and her two cousins died. After years of keeping that terrible thing she went through inside, she finally decided to speak. The only reason she did this is, because she hope that she can help millions of other women in Africa.

I didn’t have a clue about what is happening in Africa and other eastern countries until I read Waris' two books: Desert flower and Desert dawn. After reading these two books, I realized that such horrible things are still happening around the world.

Waris was just a little girl, when her mum give her only a cloth to bite in to relieve the pain. At this day her clitoris was cut off with a dirty blade. Waris was very lucky that she survived something like that. Many women of every age died because they bled to death or because of an infection.

But it is not only physical pain that is left after such a horrible experience, you have traumas for all your life. And you must be an extremely strong person to talk about it and to tell to all the world what you have been through. This is what makes Waris a hero for me. She is very courageous, and she has a deep compassion for other people. She lay her career on the line for children she doesn’t even know, for people she has never seen in her life, because she doesn’t want anybody else to be hurt like she was. She is standing up for women’s rights by letting all the world know about this horror. Waris is joining charities and campaigns to make her voice heard and to convince people to help children and to save them from going through the same experience Waris had to endure.

Write now Waris is a famous model. She is living an interesting and full life. But she will never be like most of other women. Traces of the past will never be truly erased.

Page created on 4/1/2007 12:00:00 AM

Last edited 4/1/2007 12:00:00 AM

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