We are Trudy, Sixtine, Mariel, Antoine, Benjamin, Anna-Lena and Giulia, a group of 7 young people working in Lusaka, Zambia.
We realised that most of our birthdays are within the same week at the end of July and for this occasion, we want people to help us raise money for reusable menstrual pads!
In Zambia, it is common that girls miss up to one week of school each month while on their period. Apart from affecting their future greatly in general, missing school can also lead to early pregnancies, the current rate of which 29% in Zambia. Pregnancy then commonly leads to a complete drop out of school. Another group who can be in need of sanitary items are women in prisons. These women live in very poor sanitary conditions and don’t have the means to reach out to alternatives.
We are raising money to supply reusable sanitary pads to 350 girls and 150 women (500 in total) in the compounds and prisons of Lusaka. Each woman will receive a set of four pads that she can wash and rotate through during 18 months.
These pads are more eco friendly and hygienic than current alternatives such as cutting diapers into pieces. On average, a woman uses up to 17,000 disposable sanitary products during her lifetime. Moreover, these pads take hundreds of years to decompose. Relief pad, on the other hand, can be used repeatedly for a long time and therefore, be required in much smaller quantity thus reducing the waste by 99%. Plastic waste in Lusaka goes to a dumpsite or is burnt at home and endangers human health in both cases. Reusable sanitary pads can be cooked or washed for hygiene and used for several years !
After talking to different suppliers and NGOs, we have decided to cooperate with the experienced NGO Hope for Girls and Boys. Not only do they work with the manufacturers of the pads and reach out to different communities, they also work in the rural areas, schools and slums teaching women, girls and boys about menstrual hygiene management.
Each contribution, whatever the amount, is welcome. Help us realize this project and become an actor of it !