During a school trip to a government school in a remote village in Rajasthan, I learned that most girls missed school during their menstrual cycle or even dropped out. It greatly disturbed me to note that about half the world's population experiences menstruation but it still stops women and girls from reaching their full potential.
Menstruation is a topic which is a taboo to speak about in our society. A recent report shows that about 88% of menstruating women in India do not have access to sanitary products during their period, and use alternatives like pieces of rag, ash, sand and husk. As a result, almost 1 in every 4 adolescent girls in the country quits school when she hits puberty. Poor menstrual hygiene is also responsible for almost 70% of reproductive diseases in India.
90% of the sanitary pads we use are made of non-biodegradable plastic. Studies have shown that each sanitary pad could take anything from 500-800 years to decompose, and a single woman can generate up to 125 kg of non-biodegradable waste through her menstruating years. Now think that 121 million females in India who use pads and dispose of about 21,780 million pads annually.
In India, nearly 23 million girls drop out of school annually due to the lack of proper menstrual management facilities.
WHAT WE INTEND TO DO:
Project flow in partnership with the Sanshil Foundation has the following four fold approach:
1- To conduct awareness workshops to educate girls and women about menstrual hygiene.
2- To provide employment to the women of villages in Haryana who make our pads and sell it to us.
3- To distribute reusable pads to young girls and women as a safe and pocket friendly option.
4- To reduce menstrual waste as reusable pads last for over 2 years as against disposable pads which are for one time use only.
WHY REUSABLE PADS ?
As disposable pads are costly, village women have to use old cloth or hay, ash or sand wrapped around in a rag. These unhealthy ways may cause Cervical Cancer, Reproductive Tract Infection, Hepatitis B infection to name a few. Apart from the physical problems these women and girls may suffer greatly from low self esteem and confidence and they may miss out on their education.
Reusable pads are a healthy and hygienic solution to this problem. They last upto 2 years, are comfortable, leak proof and skin friendly. They also have huge positive impact on the environment.
HOW CAN YOU HELP ?
We need your help in making sure that the young girls and women who are missing out on crucial growth opportunities are given wings to fly. Your donations would help us to buy, arrange and distribute Project Flow sanitary kits. These consist of 3 reusable pads made from 100% organic cotton along with instructions in the vernacular language. The cost of production for each kit is Rs. 180. Your contribution can begin with as little as one kit.
We look forward to your support!
By doing your bit, help us in doing ours!