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Directory of Child Rights Organisations

Inter-African Committee on Traditional Practices (IAC)

Area of Expertise:

The Inter-African Committee on traditional practices affecting the health of women and children (IAC) is an African regional umbrella body that has been working on policy programmes and actions to stop FGM in the African Region for the last 28 years. It was formed by African delegates to a seminar organised by a United Nations NGO Working Group on Traditional Practices based in Geneva, with the support of UNFPA, UNICEF, WHO and the Ministry of Health of Senegal. It was formed at a time when female genital mutilation was a highly controversial and a ‘sensitive’ issue for discussion and there was a critical need for an African regional voice in an international campaign against FGM.

The mission of IAC is an African Region free of female genital mutilation and gender related harmful practices. Its two main objectives are to:

  • prevent and eliminate traditional practices that are harmful to or impede the health, human development and rights of women and girls and advocate for care for those who suffer the health consequences of harmful practices;
  • promote and support those traditional practices that improve and contribute to the health, human development and rights of women and children.

The headquarters of IAC is in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, where it is registered as a non profit organisation and it has a liaison office in Geneva. The IAC has national chapters, referred to as national committees, in 29 African countries. The IAC links to African population groups in the diaspora through its many affiliates throughout the world (Belgium, France, United Kingdom, Spain, Germany, Sweden, Norway, Italy, Canada, USA, New Zealand, Japan).

The IAC is organised as follows:

  • A General Assembly which consists of all the national committees;
  • The Executive Board (consisting of members from 5 African countries elected by the General Assembly + 6 zone coordinators);
  • The Executive Branch (secretariat)  that includes all technical staff in Addis Ababa and Geneva;
  • National committees;
  • Scientific committee; and
  • Thousands of volunteers participating in the work of IAC in all the countries.

The Inter-African Committee enjoys consultative status with the United Nations (UN/ECOSOC) and holds an observer status with the African Union. It works in partnership with UNFPA, WHO and UNICEF and is a member of the NGO network affiliated to the International Organisation of Francophone countries. The IAC collaborates with several international organisations active in the field of the protection of women’s and children’s human rights.

Location: Ethiopia
Postal Address:

ECA/ Africa Hall, Menelik Avenue
P.O Box 3001, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

Phone: (+251)-11-551 57 93
E- Mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

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