No stain will restrain the learning of female students.
I entered the class with a big smile as always. It was the twentieth day of my Fellowship. “What are we going to learn today, miss?” Students asked with curious eyes. “We will learn about uses of grammar today,” I replied. Students were full of energy and enthusiasm even if it was the last class (Extra class) of the day. As I was about to start the lesson, the empty bench of the first row grabbed my attention.
I asked the student where did the rest of the students go. One of them replied, “They left early!” I was curious to know where they went, why they went. My mind was racing with thoughts even though some of the students went missing, I tried to continue with the class but I couldn’t. I had to find them. I gave classwork to the students and rushed to my co-Fellow to look for a suggestion on the issue.
The search began.
My co-Fellow came back with the information that the students were sitting in the yard behind the school. He said he could hear the fear and embarrassment in their voices when they shared the reason.
So, I went to them and asked, “Why didn’t you attend your extra class today? “, one of the students replied, her face looking at the ground and one of the hand squeezing her friends wrist. ” I was so embarrassed to enter the class with the stains on my skirt. Everybody would have made fun of me and I didn’t have enough money to buy the sanitary pad.”
I took out a pad from my bag and gave it to her. But that wasn’t the solution of the issue.
So we started to look for the solution, we decided if there were any shops or pharmacy that were carrying sanitary pads so that we can direct our students. We found one two hours away from the school which meant, students who lived two to three hours away from school had to walk almost five hours to get access to a sanitary pad.
Thus, our project aims to provide access to sanitary pads for female students and promote menstrual hygiene to enable them to gain confidence and determination in classrooms.
Our project targets are to achieve 100% attendance of female students during periods, increase their confidence and promote hygienic behavior and make school staffs and community awareness about the importance of menstrual hygiene.
We couldn’t let distance and money be the reasons for female students to remain absent from their classes and risk their health and future. After discussing some ideas and researching with my co-Fellow we found out about Eco-Pads. Eco-Pads will be a long-term solution for this problem as its reusable and works for long term. This solution is not only solving their menstrual hygiene problem but also giving them knowledge about male and female bodily functions.
The following table represents cost estimation for execution of the project:
1 Small Pad 140X 65 =9100
2 Long Pad 150X65 = 9750
3 Small Liner 25X 65=1625
4 Long Liner 30X 65=1950
5 Cotton bag 90X65=5850
6 Plastic bag 5X65=325
7 Flipchart 1000X1=1000
8 Transportation =2000
9 Printing and Stationary =1000