The first event to celebrate the beginning of the end of the marginalization and discrimination of the “Fugas” (Golden Hands), and the discovery of their human dignity and personhood was held in Durame on October 16th and 17th. This ground breaking event was attended by participants estimated to number between 15,000 and 20,000 including Golden Hands, distinguished guests, community members, uncut girls, and local government officials.
The event was held to celebrate the remarkable achievements of social integration and harmonization of golden hands with rest of the community (womanos) in Kembatta Tembaro Zone. These remarkable achievements include improved land rights, better access to credit and education, increased participation is political offices, and growing integration with the rest of the community including in inter-marriage. The American Ambassador to Ethiopia, Patricia M. Haslach , KMG’s Founder and Executive Director Bogaletch Gebre, Former EU Delegation Ambassador Timothy Clark and Israeli Ambassador to Ethiopia Belaynesh Zevadia were among the feature speakers of the event inspiring and encouraging golden hands and other participants of the celebration. The celebration struck a chord with Golden hands and ‘womannos” publicly and created awakening of self worth of individuals and the Golden Hands community at large. It was a watershed historical event when non-Fuga community members publicly apologized for discriminating and exploiting the Golden Hands and when the latter publicly accepted the apologies. Also, “Fuga” and “non-Fuga” married couples publicly displayed their union which was taboo for centuries. It was truly a day to remember.
“I feel like a new person today and I came to the celebration with my four month-old baby because I feel great that we golden hands are now being considered as a human being”
– Mrs Tigist Dabocha from Angacha Woreda