Tag Archives: menstrual hygiene management

Managing menstruation in the workplace: an overlooked issue in low- and middle-income countries

Managing menstruation in the workplace: an overlooked issue in low- and middle-income countriesInt J Equity Health. 2016; 15: 86.

Authors: Marni Sommer, Sahani Chandraratna, Sue Cavill, et. al.

The potential menstrual hygiene management barriers faced by adolescent girls and women in workplace environments in low- and middle-income countries has been under addressed in research, programming and policy. Despite global efforts to reduce poverty among women in such contexts, there has been insufficient attention to the water and sanitation related barriers, specifically in relation to managing monthly menstruation, that may hinder girls’ and women’s contributions to the workplace, and their health and wellbeing.

There is an urgent need to document the specific social and environmental barriers they may be facing in relation to menstrual management, to conduct a costing of the implications of inadequate supportive workplace environments for menstrual hygiene management, and to understand the implications for girls’ and women’s health and wellbeing. This will provide essential evidence for guiding national policy makers, the private sector, donors and activists focused on advancing girls’ and women’s rights.

An Innovative Solution To Menstrual Hygiene In Developing Countries

An Innovative Solution To Menstrual Hygiene In Developing Countries | Source: Co.Design, June 2016 |

Meet Flo, an affordable, modular “period kit” that allows girls in impoverished countries to wash, dry, and store their reusable sanitary pads. 3050139-slide-s-3-a-device-that-makes-menstruation-safer

In underdeveloped countries where periods are stigmatized, adolescent girls have a lot more to deal with each month than physical discomfort and hormones. Pads and tampons aren’t always available in rural areas, and when they are they’re expensive. Reusable pads help solve some of the problem, but keeping them clean is tough when girls have to hide their period from others.

It’s that last problem that a group of students from the Art Center College of Design in California and Yale Business School set out to solve with Flo, a kit for washing, drying, and storing sanitary pads. It includes a detachable device using for spinning the pad dry and hanging it up in privacy, as well as a pouch for transporting.

Read the complete article.

Girls Across The Globe Are Missing School Because Of Their Periods

Girls Across The Globe Are Missing School Because Of Their Periods | Source: Yahoo News, April 18 2016 |

One in 10 school-age girls in Africa misses school or drops out for reasons related to her period, according to one widely cited UNICEF statistic.

afripads

Photo courtesy of AFRIPADS

Growing up in Connecticut, Sophia Grinvalds would pick a queue with a female cashier when she went shopping for tampons, just to avoid making her purchase in front of a male employee.

But when she ended up working in Africa after graduation, she said she quickly realised that the “sense of fear or embarrassment” that comes along with menstruation and access to supplies in the U.S. can have astronomically bigger consequences for women and girls there.

Grinvalds had been living in a remote village in Uganda for five months when she was met with an unpleasant surprise: Her period arrived, but her feminine-product supply had run out.

“I did what any sensible person does,” she recalled. “I sent my boyfriend into a village to go and find me some pads.”

After coming up empty at the local depots — six-foot-by-six-foot wooden shacks that sell everything from eggs to soap — her now-husband, Paul, hitched a ride on a motorcycle to find a merchant that had Grinvalds’ needed supplies in stock. An errand that would have lasted 30 minutes or fewer back home in the U.S. ended up taking Paul more than three hours.

Read the complete article.

A Time for Global Action: Addressing Girls’ Menstrual Hygiene Management Needs in Schools

A Time for Global Action: Addressing Girls’ Menstrual Hygiene Management Needs in Schools. PLoS Medicine, Feb 2016.

Authors: Marni Sommer , Bethany A. Caruso , Murat Sahin , Teresa Calderon , Sue Cavill , Therese Mahon .

Summary Points

  • There is an absence of guidance, facilities, and materials for schoolgirls to manage their menstruation in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs).
  • Formative evidence has raised awareness that poor menstrual hygiene management (MHM) contributes to inequity, increasing exposure to transactional sex to obtain sanitary items, with some evidence of an effect on school indicators and with repercussions for sexual, reproductive, and general health throughout the life course.
  • Despite increasing evidence and interest in taking action to improve school conditions for girls, there has not been a systematic mapping of MHM priorities or coordination of relevant sectors and disciplines to catalyze change, with a need to develop country-level expertise.
  • Columbia University and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) convened members of academia, nongovernmental organizations, the UN, donor agencies, the private sector, and social entrepreneurial groups in October 2014 (“MHM in Ten) to identify key public health issues requiring prioritization, coordination, and investment by 2024.
  • Five key priorities were identified to guide global, national, and local action.

Menstruation Matters: Empowering women, every day of the month – Sabrina Rubli

Published on Jan 29, 2016

We all know of the importance of breaking the menstrual taboo but in this talk, you’ll find out why we need to do this and what one entrepreneur is doing to address the taboo, empowering women and young girls in Africa.

Sabrina Rubli is Founding Director of Femme International, an NGO that is using education and conversation to break down the menstrual taboo in East Africa. The organization works to empower young women by delivering interactive health education workshops designed to keep girls in school, and has been involved in the global Menstrual Hygiene Day movement since its inception.

The anatomy of a campaign: ‘If men had periods’ by WaterAid

The anatomy of a campaign: ‘If men had periods’ by WaterAid | Source: The Guardian, Jan 25, 2016.

WaterAid’s campaign to raise awareness about the importance of menstrual hygiene playfully imagines a world where men have periods.

Back story

At WaterAid, we asked why menstruation provokes such a response? And I asked myself why, as a woman in my early 30s, do I still hide my tampon up my sleeve when I go to the office toilet?

wateraid

If Men had Periods – manpon campaign by Wateraid Photograph: WaterAid

More than one billion women don’t have access to somewhere safe to go to the toilet when they’re on their period. Often forced to find somewhere after dark, this is both undignified and dangerous. A lack of toilets in schools means that young girls often drop out of education when they reach puberty, limiting their life chances.

Without access to proper sanitary products, many women and girls use rags, newspaper and even mud, which can lead to infections. In rural Nepal and northern India the outlawed practice of chhaupadi – being ostracised from your family during your monthly cycle – still prevails.

In the UK, we use extraordinarily inventive euphemisms for menstruation – phrases like “I’m on”, “It’s that time of the month”, “the painters and decorators are in” are common, but starting your period should be a celebrated rite of passage, not an invisible act.

Development issues can be tough to translate to a UK audience, but periods are a relatable experience and we decided to use that to our advantage.

Read the complete article.

2015 – The year that embraced menstruation and brought innovation to women world over

2015 – The year that embraced menstruation and brought innovation to women world over. Source: by Binjal Shah, YourStory, Dec 31, 2015.

Every day, 800 million women around the world are experiencing ‘that time of the month.’ You know, they ‘Code Red’. ‘Surrender to the communists’. ‘Take the week off to visit their Aunt Flo’.

mhm

The sad reality of our time even today is that we’d spend more energy coming up with bad puns to talk about our period, instead of utilising it to talk simply, more pronouncedly, more often, and more naturally.

This year, we saw instances of the former as well as the latter.
Here is a summary of the puzzling year that was, and what it will figure in the larger roadmap laid towards fighting the taboos around menstruation.

Read the complete article