Access to Sanitary Wear for 1000 Girls in Matobo

by Hope for a Child in Christ (HOCIC)
Access to Sanitary Wear for 1000 Girls in Matobo
Access to Sanitary Wear for 1000 Girls in Matobo
Access to Sanitary Wear for 1000 Girls in Matobo
Access to Sanitary Wear for 1000 Girls in Matobo
Access to Sanitary Wear for 1000 Girls in Matobo
Access to Sanitary Wear for 1000 Girls in Matobo

In the quarter under review, the Access to Sanitary ware project team worked on Youth Casts in partnership with the Gold Youth peer to peer and Shoes2school. This initiative aimed to discuss issues that affect the youth in the form of podcasts that were recorded in one of the local languages which is Ndebele and English. The Youth Casts were facilitated by the Access to Sanitary ware program team who engaged with youths from various sectors. The Access to Sanitary wear team also went to Maphisa ward 11 to conduct a reusable pads training with 20 young women aged between 15 to 20. The training was conducted by a HOCIC community facilitator and she encouraged the young women to practice hygiene and not use dirty cloths and denim material as pads as these could expose them to vaginal infections. The HOCIC team also donated face masks to the young ladies and encouraged them to stay safe and move around only when it’s necessary. The team plans to hold a monitoring visit and also have another training in Maphisa, funds permitting.
The Access to Sanitary ware team successfully conducted a car wash fundraising event. The car wash was conducted from 21st to the 22nd of October 2020.The funds raised are for conducting the monitoring visit in Maphisa Ward 11. The total of $172 USD was raised from the event. It is important to note that other programs within the organization also contributed to make the fundraising a success. This includes Urban Food Assistance and Livelihoods, HOCIC Admin who assisted with refreshments to sale for the fundraising, Securing Rights Program, Lean Season Assistance brought in their cars for a Car wash

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In the quarter under review, GlobalGiving was affected by the COVID-19 lockdown however it managed to partner with the Bulawayo Junior City Council on their initiative to help vulnerable women and girls with access to sanitary wear on the realization of the soaring prices of pads which made them unaffordable for people from humble backgrounds. The initiative ran under the theme; “I bleed by nature, you help me by choice” and it called on well wishers to assist in cash and in form of sanitary wear. The Hope for a Child in Christ GlobalGiving team saw it fit to partner in the initiative since it is inline with their mandate of helping girls have access to sanitary wear thus on the 6th of July the team handed over sanitary wear to the Junior Council for donation to the underprivileged. The team managed to purchase 2 boxes of Nina pads though it was ideal to buy more, however the funds constraints restrained the team from purchasing more towards the initiative as it helps in enabling the girl child to have a high self esteem. During the handover ceremony, both parties discussed on sustainable measures that could be used in a bid to guard against the dependency syndrome on sanitary wear and the members of the junior council proposed that they would work with organizations that produce reusable sanitary wear. The HOCIC team encouraged the Junior Council to also conduct teachings on cleanliness and hygiene to guard against the people assisted from getting infections, the HOCIC GlobalGiving team also offered to assist, funds permitting with the acquisition of reusable sanitary wear.

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HOCIC has continued work with adolescent girls in Matobo district. HOCIC under the Securing Rights Program has formed ten Sista2Sista clubs. These clubs provide young women and adolescent girls with safe places where they are able to come together to learn skills and techniques to assist the in overcoming various challenges they face.

During the quarter under review the Access to Sanitary Wear for 1000 girls in Matobo has worked in partnership with the Securing Rights Program conducting menstrual hygiene and health trainings and life skills trainings with the Sista2Sista clubs. The main objective of these trainings is to ensure that the girls practise good hygiene not only during their menstruation but everyday of their lives. The trainings also aim to demystify myths and other age-old traditions that the girls and young women are taught with pose health hazards to the girls. For example, girls are taught that in order to be able to sexually satisfy a man they should stuff herbs and other materials in their vaginas. These age-old traditions may cause serious challenges such as cervical cancer.

The Program Assistant has also monitored the girls who were trained on how to make reusable sanitary pads and have been using them. The girls still state that the pads are a sustainable solution that has also reduced their monthly costs of living. However, the girls may need new reusable sanitary pads by June as the ones they have are starting to get old. The Program envisions to raise funds to conduct refresher trainings and provide the girls with materials to make more reusable pads before the beginning to June 2020.

The Access to Sanitary Wear for 1000 girls continues to face challenges in raising funds and receiving funds disbursed from GlobalGiving.

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First and foremost, HOCIC would like to apologise for sending the 5th quarter report late. HOCIC team continued to work in Matobo with adolescent girls and young women during the period under review. The adolescent girls continued to meet in their Sista2Sista groups and they indicated that they now meet once a month due to the onset of the farming season. A newly formed Sista2sista club was monitored and trained on detergent making and reusable pad making.  In ward 3 they reported that economic abuse cases have been reduced as most of the young women are engaged in the small businesses and are able to contribute to the monthly family income. Of concern however were reports that 7 girls from a school in Gohole, Matobo who are form 4s dropped out of school due to teenage pregnancy. They indicated that the main cause for such was due to the prevailing economic hardships thus forcing young people to engage in sexual relationships for money. This highlights the need to upscale the program to reach out to more adolescent girls with sexual reproductive health information in the area. There was also 1 case of attempted rape of a primary school child thus this has led to increased security for the young people as the parents are now accompanying their minors to and from school. The low-cost boarding school that was established early this year to avoid that the girls walk long distances to and from school o foot is up and running, however, the school is only accommodating a few girls thus there is need to extend the blocks so as to accommodate more young people. The cases of Gender Based violence resulted in HOCIC launching the campaign for 16 Days of Activism Against Gender Based Violence on the 25th of November 2019 through sending of bulk smes to the targeted communities. The theme for the year is “Generational equality: Stands Against Rape” and messages were sent to sensitise communities on the campaign and the need to act against rape in their communities. A sports gala was also conducted in ward 3 under the theme is “Generational equality: Stands Against Rape” #OrangeTheWorld so as to encourage the communities to speak out against rape. During the commemoration various partners were able to share solidarity messages to the community on the need to stop violence against women and girls. The guest of honour who is the chief’s assessor also shared a message to denounce rape in the area, he encouraged the people to always report rape cases and ensure that the kraal heads do not house perpetrators within their villages. During the commemoration the people were able to access various GBV services which included counselling and HIV testing and counselling.

The project however still faces challenges in raising enough funds on the Global Giving platform. 

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Monitoring visit at Zamanyoni
Monitoring visit at Zamanyoni

During the fourth quarter monitoring visits were conducted at Mahetshe secondary school and at Zamanyoni Primary school. The participants are making good use of the skill acquired and are showing positive results.

A total of forty young girls were trained at Mahetshe secondary school, Ms Ncube now managed to cascade the training to a total of sixty more young girls in the school. The prevailing economic crisis in Zimbabwe makes it difficult for families to be able to buy necessities. The training has made it easy for young girls in the school to access clean and safe to use sanitary wear.  All the girls have managed to complete five pads each and have all used them, they also stated that the reusable sanitary pads are cost effective for their families.

At Zamanyoni primary school seventeen of the women trained who are caregivers of young girls managed to complete making five reusable sanitary pads each. The women have stated that they would like to continue making the pads to resell but they do not have the funds to purchase the materials. One of the interviewed participants stated that the initiative could not have come a better time as it has eased the burden of buying reusable pads whose cost is ever rising.

The project continues to face challenges of a lack of funding and unavailability of materials in the country. The project is still making efforts to raise funds to acquire menstrual cups which are more sustainable, environmentally friendly and cost effective.

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Organization Information

Hope for a Child in Christ (HOCIC)

Location: Bulawayo - Zimbabwe
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @HocicZimbabwe
Project Leader:
Sunga Mzeche
Bulawayo, Zimbabwe
$3,341 raised of $7,624 goal
53 donations
$4,283 to go
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