Thanks in part to your support, we just returned a few weeks ago from Zimbabwe. We were able to follow up to confirm the results of DfG kits and training while also doing more training and advocacy. We were so pleased to see all of the positive effects. Here are some highlights: Meet 11 yr old Kgotso (Second from the left in the photo. Prounounced Go-tso). She doesn't define herself as an orphan since she got her kit and training last year, she sees herself as an advocate for DFG and since she heard about it has been helping others to make their own kits. She learned about DFGZ when Ambassadors of Women's Health traveled to Nzilikazi to teach a girls club of 200 (200!) Kgotso no longer has to miss school and she wants to share. She is an innovator too. She used her PUL scraps to make a tiny bag for a single liner to take to the latrine during school. Others started making them too. Today she continues to hold DFG meetings at her school.
"Dignity can not wait." The Honorable Deputy Prime Minister of Zimbabwe; Vice President of the Movement for Democratic Change, Thokozani Khupe, was in absolute support of DfG when we met with her and spoke so eloquently about the importance of empowering girls with sanitary solutions saying, "Even I have suffered this as a girl." Such important connections to discuss how to ensure every girl in the world has access to hygiene happened thanks to DfG supporters like YOU!
The Head School Matron met us at matatu 47 (a van that acts as a community bus). From there we would walk through local markets and down green paths and up a dirt path to get to the Hamomi School. We had just completed the training for 50 Kenyan women to teach others as Ambassadors of Women's Health instructing in female reproductive health, empowerment and safety and readying to partner with girls in local schools. Now it was time to meet girls who had received their kits about a year ago and see what the results really are. We had come to get the facts. The girls, teachers and directors were unanimous. Before they received the kits girls missed 2 - 5 days of school per month. All but two experienced 1 - 2 leaking episodes at school per month before retreating to stay home. After they missed ZERO days due to periods and had zero leaks! Their only suggestion? One girls said, "More panties please!". When asked how many she said 10.and it was that way in place after place.Zero missed days. Zero leaks. Ed cross checked students with teachers responses and it was the same across the board! Next up? We hope that with adequate funding Ed can return in November with resources to ensure that those trained as Ambassadors of Women's Heslth can work with women's Sewing Cooperatobes and girls in schools to team up to create kits locally, empower women with knowledge and self-esteem, and access to quality sustainable feminine hygiene. After probing this fourth phase we will be able to replicate it worldwide. For now... We're focused on continued results for girls to count on month after month. Thank you for helping make a huge leap forward possible.
Your support made it possible for 48 women and 2 men to be trained in Zimbabwe to be Ambassadors of Women's Health with Days for Girls last November. In just 5 months they have made it possible for more than 3,000 girls and women to have kits of their own! Now several of the Days for Girls (DFG) International team are returning to gather their stories, get surveys of how lives have changed, take photos, capture video, and importantly supply more resources so they can keep going.
Recently, DFG Zimbabwe has been getting thousands of requests for kits and training to make their own from as far as Cameroon, Malawi, Zambia and South Africa. DFG Zimbabwe is willing. They just need more materials.
An anonymous donor has offered to match all contributions, up to $1,000 total, as support for more girls to get more materials and resources to make their own kits. Best of all, you'll see the results almost immediately because we'll be in Africa starting on the 14th of June. So stories and photos of what your donation makes happen will start pouring in! You can empower a whole lot of girls right now.