Two international Organizations Plan Ghana and Fayyex International as part of their efforts to see the rate of girls in schools increased and also sustain those who are already acquiring education have organized a day durbar on Menstrual Hygiene Management (MHM) for school going girls from the Leklebi Traditional Area of the Volta Region.
Plan Ghana is a Non-Governmental Organization with a goal to ensure that life is made meaningful for children especially the most marginalized whiles Faytex International are the producers of Faytex sanitary pads.
The menstrual hygiene education which was well attended by chiefs, opinion leaders, teachers and pupils from the Leklebi Fiape and Leklebi Agbesia DA Primary and Junior High School (JHS) at Afadzato South District in the Volta Region.
Besides, the insightful speeches from resource persons, the pupils from the schools also spiced the gathering with a cultural display on the need for a girl as well as women to properly keep themselves well when menstruating.
RWASH Project Manager, Mr. William Domapielle (Left) Distributed Tecky Taps To The Community
The boys and men gathered were also made to know that there was the need for them to support the girl child during that stage of their lives and also to do away with certain cultural inhibitions connected with menstruation which impedes the growth of girls.
Mrs. Lilian Bruce, Plan Ghana’s Gender and Influencing Specialist - RWASH Project, “Proper Menstrual Hygiene Management of girls means that there is the need for a safe water supply and improved sanitation facilities were important at all levels as women have specific hygiene needs during menstruation, pregnancy and child bearing.”
Continuing her education on menstrual hygiene, She indicated that there was the need to also take into consideration the fact that access to information on menstrual hygiene management is directly linked in achieving some of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) such as ensuring healthy lives and well-being for all (SDG 3), quality in education (SDG 4), gender equality (SDG 5), clean water and sanitation (SDG 6) and decent work and economic growth (SDG 8) hence the collaboration with Fay International to empower the adolescent girls.
“Considering the fact that females make a high number of the population and they experience monthly menstruation, menstrual hygiene is significant for the holistic development of the female from healthy lives to equitable education, to ensuring gender equality and empowerment.”
Plan Ghana and Faytex International free sanitary kits distribution and education is a component of the Rural Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (RWASH) Project meant to ensure access to quality sustainable feminine hygiene for girls in schools who otherwise go without menstrual health management and reproductive health education and provide sanitary hygiene solution
According to Mrs. Bruce, “In Ghana issues associated with menstruation are never discussed openly and the silence surrounding menstruation burdens young girls by making them ignorant and prevents them from going to school during that period in some communities hence the need to break the myths surrounding it.”
Menstrual hygiene management is a very important aspect in the life of adolescent girls and women. Managing adequate hygiene is quite challenging for menstruating young girls and women because of some factors which may span from financial or social backgrounds.
Hence, our children our children must always be educated on personal and menstrual hygiene practices to promote good health because unhygienic practices like the use of rags, toilet rolls, old clothes for the absorption of menstrual blood in during menstruation leads to many health-related complications like reproductive tract infections, bad vaginal discharges, toxic shock syndrome et al.
In that vein, speaking to the media Mrs. Rose Beyuo Siilo, Volta Region Programme Unit Manager – Plan Ghana noted that the focus on providing reusable sanitary kits which is more hygienic and fashionable, creating awareness and provides training for women and girls on personal and menstrual hygiene creates enterprises with women in communities.
She noted “It’s also more fashionable and hygienic as well as makes them have self - confidence when going about their daily duties.”
Adding, “When girls receive our menstrual hygiene kits, we know that they no longer need to use unhygienic items and miss days of school each month. Plan Ghana’s sanitary pads are a doorway to a larger vital women’s health conversation”
Mrs. Siilo added that the MHM provide opportunity necessary for girls to stay in school which means there is the need to clean facilities, safer spaces change themselves and make WASH amenities accessible to the girl child at all times in schools and communities.
In an interview with some of the girls who received the sanitary kits, they were happy about the organization’s initiative, adding that, not only will most girls freely come to school during their menstrual cycles but also, it will save parents who cannot afford sanitary towels for their girls.
on her part, the Marketing Manager for Faytex International Mary Achieng whiles educating the pupils noted that the partnership with Plan Ghana was a cause to create awareness and bring an end to the adversities that women and girls endure everyday due to menstruation.
“Our mission is to aid the advancement of girls and women in Ghana by offering safe, healthy, and affordable sanitary products of premium quality to all.”
To further accomplish our journey, we support girls to discover themselves through menstrual hygiene management for them to become the empowered leaders for tomorrow, she added.
Plan Ghana also used the occasion to distribute Tecky Taps, which locally manufactured handwashing tool to aid in proper handwashing with soap and water.
Water from the Tecky Tap is dispelled with use of the leg.