On 6th March a workshop of Awareness Personal Hygiene for Girls sponsored by Rotary Club Uruvella took place in Akshay Educational Centre (Amwan, Bodhgaya).
Women of our sewing school prepared a “menstruation hygiene kit” which contained, the sanitary napkins made out of cloth, panties, soap, all in and an attractive bag for each of the 50 girls who came to the talk.
The workshop was runned by Guriya Devi and Mala Devi but also the ladies of Rotary Club kindly participated in the talk. The talk was accompanied by a video and later different issues arouse and discussion took place of the different problems the girls have to face.
These are the facts about Menstruation in rural India which you can read about in the following lines and the reason why this workshop has taken place to create awareness among the girls.
We are very grateful to all rotarians of Rotary Club Uruvella for sponsoring the workshop and for participating in this event.
Menstruation in rural India:
When it comes to menstruation the gulf between rural and urban women broadens considerably. Menstruation is a subject which is not discussed freely by teachers and mothers, but in urban area the internet and more awareness and education conversations around menstruation have become less inhibited. However, when it comes to rural areas we see a complete contrast. With the lack of resources, education and awareness about personal hygiene, women don’t have any conversation around menstruation.
Given the taboos surrounding it, it is often seen as dirty and unpleasant and it never gets the attention it needs.
According to the latest National Family Health Survey (2015/2016) report the usage of sanitary napkins among indian women is 48,5 % in rural areas. Although there has been an increase in the number of rural women using sanitary napkins the number of girls missing school due to menstrual pain has not gone down.
Most of the women in rural areas are using unhygienic products. There is a lot of silence on the subject. There are many women who have never seen or touched a sanitary napkin in their lives. This is due to:
Lack of awareness of hygiene, most women are not aware of the concept of menstrual hygiene. There is so much stigma around periods being dirty that women choose to use dirty cloth repeatedly.
Lack of availability, in most rural areas sanitary napkins are not available for several kilometres or the shops are guarded by men which makes the transaction very difficult for rural women
Lack of affordability, in some areas there is a lack of good quality affordable products.
Menstruation for most women is accompanied with pain and discomfort and with the lack of awareness and access to santitary napkins it becomes very difficult for grils to go to school and many tend to drop out.
23% grils drop out of school when they start menstruating due lack of affordability of menstrual hygiene products. This drives to early child marriage and makes them lose the opportunity to be educated.
We hope to have contributed to the awareness in hygiene for girls and hope to be able to conduct some more workshops for more girls.
Thank you Rotary Club