Did you know that 75% of girls in rural Guatemala will drop out of school before they become teenagers, leading to repeating the poverty cycle of their parents. A large cause of this crisis is the inability to obtain cost effective feminine hygiene resulting in a lack of education, a lack of job skills and astrnomical teen pregnancy rates. The rural Guatemalan community desperately wants to break this cycle and we can help - with your help. We want to break these cycles by providing this community with an opportunity to keep girls in school with reusable feminine products. Improving students’ future opportunities through internships and scholarships will teach them how to create a business by making reusable feminine hygiene products which in turn, will create jobs that will provide financial sustainability in the community. We can do this by helping them create businesses making and distributing reusable feminine hygiene products.
In partnership with a small community, its vocational high school, and Days for Girls in Guatemala we will do more than just put a Band-Aid on the hardship faced. We will create a model for a program with a sustainable future through the following:
Ensure that girls continue to receive an education. Girls in countries that lack access to basic hygiene will often spend several days a month sitting on cardboard in their homes, waiting for their menstrual cycle to end. They miss school for several weeks a year, as well as face the shame that comes with a lack of menstrual health education and access to pads. We can minimize this by eliminating shame, fear and embarrassment, by providing access to reusable menstrual pads to help them they stay in school.
Improve students’ future opportunities through entrepreneurships. The high school is currently running several projects that focus on recycling and cutting down waste: creating rugs and blankets, out of recycled products; making soap from natural available plants; and basic reusable menstrual pads, designed by the students. These small businesses, as well as the Days for Girls Enterprise, will provide internships to the high school students. The students will learn administrative tasks of running a business such as accounting, marketing, sales while, being exposed to new career opportunities. We believe all students who excel, show initiative and desire to continue their educations should be able to do so. Funds raised from the internships will provide scholarships for the high school students and help younger students who have potential, but do not have the means, to attend this high school. After one year or so the projects should be self sustainable.
Help the environment: The Days for Girls project, as well as the other high school environment friendly projects, will decelerate the overproduction and use of plastic/paper in the community
Help the community: Bringing a Days for Girls enterprise to the Guatemalan community will not only enhance the lives and futures of the youth in the area, but also improve the livelihoods of the adults, providing financial stability in the community. The adults will sew and produce the menstrual kits with sewing machines and accessories we will provide.
- Debbie Howarth
- Tort McCarter
- william hernquist
- Julia Maushart
Organizer and beneficiary
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