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Since we began, our human rights-based education program has reached more than three million people, resulting in:
women have been selected into leadership positions in their communities
people live in communities that publicly declared an end to female genital cutting
communities that have publicly declared their daughters will not marry before they are 18
people, mostly women, have improved their reading skills thanks to our innovative training on mobile phones
villages have established their own community funds that help people save, invest, and grow
people have learned about democracy and how to make decision-making equitable

The Tostan Model

Our three-year nonformal education program puts rural communities in charge of their own futures. We help communities develop their own vision for development using an approach that is:

Human Rights-Based

Knowledge of human rights and responsibilities is the foundation for learning

Respectful & Inclusive

Information is shared in a non-judgmental way

Holistic & Sustainable

Program covers five key impact areas and has sustainability at its core

Where We Work

We partner with communities in six countries in Africa.

What’s New


The feeling of finally being seen was incredible

In this article by Mia Holmgren--originally posted in Swedish in Dagens Nyheter--Mareme Bamba and Fatou Coulibaly of Soudiane, Senegal mutually disavowed female genital cutting and child marriage. Their lives took a new turn after Tostan's three-year education program focusing on human rights. Since then, the village is equal, everyone’s opinion matters. 

Nothing To Hide: Aissatou Mane’s Path To Fistula Recovery

May 23 is the International Day to End Obstetric Fistula. This year’s theme is “End Fistula Within A Generation.” You can join the conversation and help bring an end to this preventable condition by using the hashtag #FistulaDay.

Cross-national collaboration for a future free of FGC

The Gambia recently passed a national law banning FGC; their neighbors in Senegal have had a similar law in place since 1999. With the intent of learning from the Senegalese experience with female genital cutting (FGC) and the law, as well as with grassroots strategies to reinforce the abandonment movement, UNFPA and UNICEF Gambia organized a study tour from April 27 to May 4 with their Senegalese partners across the government and NGO community.

Meet Mariétou Diarra: Social Mobilization Agent, mother, advocate for the abandonment of FGC

Researcher Antonia Morzenti conducted the following interview to get a closer look at the life of Mariétou Diarra, a Social Mobilization Agent who was trained through Tostan’s Community Empowerment Program. Mariétou’s story was also recently featured in Demba and Oureye: Unlikely Allies in the Movement to End FGC, a short film about the grassroots effort to end FGC in Senegal and beyond.


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You Can Help Create Generational Change in Three Years!

Sign-up to find out more about this ambitious campaign to transform millions of lives in West Africa.

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