Many girls in the urban poor and rural areas in Kenya miss up to a week ofschool every month during menstruation due to lack of sanitary towels. Anyteacher in Kenya will tell you, a girl without access to sanitary towels feelsembarrassed, unhygienic and uncomfortable, she also loses self esteem and withthat the confidence to interact with her classmates, or with teachers in the classroom.Most of the schools are mixed schools and this put stigma on the girls who feelunhygienic.
Sanitary towels, therefore, are a serious education issue in Kenya.
A girl absent from school for four days in 28 days (a month) loses 13learning days equivalent to two weeks of learning in every school term. In anacademic year (nine months) a girl loses 39 learning days equivalent to sixweeks of learning time. A girl in primary school between grades 6 and 8 (threeyears) loses 18 learning weeks out of 108 weeks. Within the four years of highschool a girl can lose 156 learning days equivalent to almost 24 weeks out of144 weeks of learning in High school!
Hope for Teenage Mothers has reinvented reusable and easy to afford sanitarypads made from cotton material. The girls from Mukuru slums are now makingtheir own Sanitary pads and selling at an affordable fee of Ksh 25/=. These pads are also being distributed forfree to the neighboring schools.
We are asking our friends and partners to come join with us in this dynamicchallenge by donating to us so that we can buy more materials to make more reusablesanitary pads.
One of the school girls called Joyce from Katoto primary school said. ‘I am not going to miss out on school again.The pad is good and I like it.’
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