A young girl, not more than 11 or 12 years old, is suddenly told not to go out and play with boys from her colony as she has now 'grown up'. What that means is that she has started getting her periods.
She misses school as she is embarrassed to have this 'condition', is hesitant to talk to her friends about it and also, does not know the proper reason why this is happening to her.
Menstrual Health & Hygiene have been one of the most important but neglected aspect among the young girls and women. Poor menstrual hygiene not only affects physical health, but also social and mental well-being, and thus is a violation of the human right to health.
The statistics are much worse. More than 23% young girls in schools drop out from schools and don’t have adequate access to menstrual hygiene. There seems to be a widening gap in terms of information failure among them about the same. Plus, the taboo associated with menstruation has hindered any further growth in terms of knowledge sharing. Poor menstrual health, stigmas and lack of information may result in more stress, fear, shame and social exclusion.
The School Girls, being an important lot, are affected by the above. Therefore, we at Kaivalya Education Foundation, Mumbai have decided to take a small initiative to address the issue of information failure and knowledge gap in the schools of Mumbai. It will be shaped as sensitization cum awareness sessions on Menstrual Health and Hygiene. We are planning to target children of standard 5 to 10th of 5 schools (as pilot schools) in Byculla, South Mumbai through our sessions
At the same time, these sessions would also cover sexual health topics in order to break the taboo.
1. Type of Project: Promotion of Menstrual Health and Hygiene.
2. Product Description (Fund utilization): Distribution of
(a) Sanitary pads.
(b) MENSTRUPEDIA Comics (http://www.menstrupedia.com/comic/english)
3. BUDGET: Estimated Requirement:
(a) Sanitary pads - 1500 pads * 3= 4,500 INR (Rs 3 per pad)
(b) MENSTRUPEDIA comics - 100 comics * 95= 9,500 + 500 = 10,000 INR (Rs. 95 per book+ Rs 500 shipping charges)(c) Marketing cost - 1,450 INR
4. Budget Requested: Rs.15,950/-
5.Total Number Expected Beneficiaries: 1000-1500 children (5 Schools)
6. Schools of Beneficiaries:
- Maulana Azaad High School, Byculla (West)
- Mominpura Municipal Urdu School, Byculla (West)
- St. Joseph’s School, Byculla (West)
- Safrabadi Municipal Urdu School, Byculla (West)
- Madanpura Municipal Urdu School, Byculla (West)
6. Desired Impact:
· Help school girls overcome inhibitions around menstruation health and hygiene.
· Interact freely and create a sense of normalcy around this topic to make them realize that their problems are common.
· Keep our sessions lively, with plenty of laughter and positivity.
· Introduce the Comic Book in the Schools’ Libraries for further references.
· Introduce the habit of self-learning through books.
· Help them find the courage to talk openly about menstruation with their peers.
· Address Lack of right knowledge of hygienic practices and biological basics.
Also, distribution of Pads with a short Dos and Donts manual will help in continuing the conversation beyond the session in their respective households.