Many girls in the urban poor and rural areas in Kenya miss up to a week of
school every month during menstruation due to lack of sanitary towels. Any
teacher in Kenya will tell you, a girl without access to sanitary towels feels
embarrassed, unhygienic and uncomfortable, she also loses self esteem and with
that 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 feel
Sanitary towels, therefore, are a serious education issue in Kenya.
A girl absent from school for four days in 28 days (a month) loses 13
learning days equivalent to two weeks of learning in every school term. In an
academic year (nine months) a girl loses 39 learning days equivalent to six
weeks of learning time. A girl in primary school between grades 6 and 8 (three
years) loses 18 learning weeks out of 108 weeks. Within the four years of high
school a girl can lose 156 learning days equivalent to almost 24 weeks out of
144 weeks of learning in High school!
Hope for Teenage Mothers has reinvented reusable and easy to afford sanitary
pads made from cotton material. The girls from Mukuru slums are now making
their own Sanitary pads and selling at an affordable fee of Ksh 25/=. These pads are also being distributed for
free to the neighboring schools.
We are asking our friends and partners to come join with us in this dynamic
challenge by donating to us so that we can buy more materials to make more reusable
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.’