"Every 7 seconds a girl in the world is cut.
Coco de Mer is working with Desert Flower Foundation and its founder Waris Dirie to put an end to female genital mutilation (FGM), collaborating on a film, shot by Rankin, that shows the importance of speaking up against FGM and the dramatic impact it has on women all over the world.
Coco de Mer hopes that this film resonates with people and communities globally, provoking discussions to help end this inhumane practice. The King Protea flower takes centre stage in the film, symbolising change and transformation across cultures. It also has strong cultural ties with Waris’ country of birth, Somalia, an area where the cruel ritual is rife. Coco de Mer and the Desert Flower Foundation have a vital common interest, fighting for gender equality and as this film insists, this is not about women, it is about structural gender inequality.
Waris Dirie, born in Somalia in 1965, was subjected to FGM aged five and fled the country aged 13 to escape an arranged marriage. Moving again from London to New York, at age 18 Waris was discovered by famous British celebrity photographer, Terence Donovan. Waris used her platform to speak out about her personal experience of FGM and her commitment to ending the horrific practice. The Desert Flower Foundation was founded by Waris Dirie and her team in 2002, and has strived to bring awareness to FGM globally ever since.
Waris Dirie has been shot in the Coco de Mer Icons collection, the second Icon, in our Icons, with a donation of sales going to Desert Flower Foundation. Coco de Mer and Waris Dirie are using their platforms in order to spread the word about FGM and fight for its removal from communities worldwide. The Icons pieces perfectly match the message that Coco de Mer and the Desert Flower Foundation are trying to spread, that of the empowerment of women who embrace their sexuality. Bold straps and delicate lace represent the many facets of every woman, commanding attention anytime, anywhere.
Coco de Mer CEO Lucy Litwack said: “We reached out to the Desert Flower Foundation as this is a cause extremely close to my heart. We hope that this collaboration will bring awareness and help eradicate such a cruel and inhumane practice. I believe FGM is not discussed widely enough and through this collaboration, we are trying to bring the conversation to the table. It is time to put a stop to a ritual which is unnecessarily harming countless young girls and women. Coco de Mer is standing firmly against FGM.”
The Desert Flower Foundation Founder Waris Dirie said: “I am thrilled to be collaborating with Coco de Mer in order to bring awareness to the Desert Flower Foundation. This is such a personal fight for me and I will contribute all I can to eradicate the evil practice of FGM worldwide. However, standing alone is not enough. All around the world, I implore everyone to join the fight against the horrific practice of FGM. Working with Coco de Mer has given us a further platform to spread our message and we hope that it will start a conversation that is long overdue.” - LBB Online