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Jul 5, 2019

Smiley Days Project - In Progress

Happy School Girls
Happy School Girls

Dear Friends,

Greetings from Indian Dreams Foundation!

We are happy to share the updates on SMILEY DAYS PROJECT. The team is active in the field to connect more girls & women with the project and provide them with the right knowledge on Menstrual Hygiene Management.

In the last month, the team has organized 12-15 group meetings with the slums’ women and collected their feedbacks on reproductive health issues. Below are the highlighted updates;

  • Organized 12-15 focus group meetings in the target communities that comprise approx. 20 women and girls per meeting.
  • Identified 5 new ROSHNI DIDIs (Community Change Agents)
  • Distributed 1500+ Sanitary Pads in a month.
  • Identified 15 New Schools to establish a partnership.

 

We are very excited for GlobalGiving upcoming July 18 Bonus Day. Only a few days are left! This Bonus Day is all about matching BIG gifts that will help us to continue the project and making differences in the lives of women & girls. The JULY BONUS DAY is starting on Thursday, July 18.

The higher the donation, the higher the match!

We thank you for your support for the girls and women’s reproductive health and rights in India and we will continue to keep you updated about our work and stories from the field.

 

Regards,

Team IDF

Jun 26, 2019

Do Not Shy On Menstruation - Be Proud

Confident Smiley Girls
Confident Smiley Girls

 

“I almost used to miss 45 – 48 days in a year just because of my period cramps and uncomfort. Although, I often skipped at least three days every month and some times more than three days were not enough to manage it. That directly impacted on my poor learning & performance in the classroom and I didn’t secure good scores in the final examination. I was in the 8th standard at that time. I lost all of my hope and confidence after saw the exam result.

I felt like periods are a curse for me. Because of that, I didn’t concentrate on my studies. I felt guilty on myself to be a menstruating girl that bleeds every month and doesn’t know why? I felt shame and hesitation to discuss my period issues even with my elder sister who had been menstruating for the last four years. I felt alone and devastated. There were lots of queries that I wanted to discuss with someone but my shame was restricted me for not telling with anyone. However, my mother told me that periods are dirty and there is no need to discuss it with anyone because people may laugh on you and consider you as a shameless girl. So please be silent on that issue”.

A girl named Rakhi (name changed) has come up with her story of shame towards menstruation. She is not the only girl in India who feels guilty once she starts menstruating. Too many girls cannot access the right knowledge & information on menstruation and they turn to become helpless and lose their confidence to cope up with the current situations.

The project Smiley Days are helping such girls to access them the right information at the right time on menstruation and related issues. Many girls like Rakhi attend regular awareness sessions on MHM and reproductive health in their schools as well as their communities on a regular interval.

 

Thanks to all for your generous support & love for this project that really changing the lives of many girls in India!

 

Regards,

Team IDF

Girls are doing yoga during awareness session
Girls are doing yoga during awareness session
Jun 13, 2019

Smiley Days is Changing lives of many girls

Proud to be a Girl
Proud to be a Girl

Hello Friends,

Today we are come up with a story of a school going girl named Payal (name changed) that how she managed her periods and currently how she motivates her peer group in the school and community.

Payal like many poor girls in India has been faced with many challenges in managing menstruation at school. A confident and smart pupil, Payal was frank about her experience since the onset of puberty.

She described, “I was totally shocked when I first saw my period. No one told me about it, so when it happened during class I felt embarrassed because there was blood on my uniform. I remember I was in the seventh standard at that time. I felt there was no one I could talk to. I was so nervous & afraid that there was something wrong with me”.

Payal added, “I was not comfortable going to school when I was on my period, missing school for days which affected my studies. I preferred to stay at home rather than going to school during those days of menstruation”.

For many girls like Payal, talking about menstruation and its related issues are considered taboo. They are unlikely to have any information before menarche from school or parents. If at all they get any information it is likely to include rules on why it is necessary to stay silent or mother instruct to not talking with anyone especially male members of the family. This poses a risk to girls as they continue to practice poor hygiene during menstruation such as using old clothes that have not been properly sterilized (washed well with soap and dried in the sun), not changing regularly and not practising hand washing with soap. As a result, girls increase the risk of infections that can over time if not treated lead to reproductive tract infection. With no provision of a separate girls’ toilet, changing rooms to dispose or change cloth, no sanitary napkin facilities, no incinerators or running water and soap for hand washing,

Smiley Days Project has been changing the lives of many such girls and young women in India by providing them right information & knowledge about menstruation hygiene management and raising awareness among the girls in school on menstruation and how to safely manage menstrual hygiene is also central to their intervention.

Today Payal is a confident and happy girl who like others in her school now understands the importance of good menstrual hygiene and is able to attend school regularly. Now she works as Change Agent in her school & community who educate & aware other fellows to become confident.

Now Payal proudly says, “Yes, I am a girl and I am proud to be a girl. Menstruation is every girl’s dignity and we should not feel shame on our dignity. I love to motivate & educate other girls from my school and community. I do not skip my school during periods”.

We thank you for your support for the girls and women’s reproductive health and rights in India and we will continue to keep you updated about our work and stories from the field.

 

Regards,

Team IDF

 
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