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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


International Day for the Abandonment of FGC: A Photo Essay

On this year’s International Day for the Abandonment of female genital cutting (FGC), Tostan partnered with the Senegalese government, UNFPA and UNICEF for an exciting day-long event celebrating progress made towards the abandonment of FGC—as well as those individuals who have done so much to bring about this breakthrough change for future generations. The day began with a panel discussion at the Tostan Training Center, and concluded with a ceremony hosted by the community of Keur Simbara.

Rose Diop Recounts Her Journey from Unlikely Beginnings to Tostan Senegal's FIRST Female National Coordinator

Rose Diop, the newly selected National Coordinator of Tostan Senegal, is a walking example of Tostan’s most fundamental principles—respect, collectivity, and creating a vision for a better future. She will go down in history as the first woman to serve as Regional Coordinator, and now the first female National Coordinator, as Rose continues to add to her robust legacy at Tostan. With serious eyes and a gentle smile, her commitment to our partner communities and her ability to exude calm authority have remained constant throughout her career.

Challenging Gender Roles through Engaged Fatherhood

Many studies have shown that the involvement of men in early childhood development (ECD) is extremely beneficial to a child’s social, emotional and cognitive growth. Fathers who are involved and playful with their infants have children with higher IQs, improved linguistic abilities, greater capacity for empathy, decreased gender stereotypes, and are all-round better prepared to succeed in school. 


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