Tag Archives: menstrual hygiene

Potential PhD in Menstrual Hygiene Management at WEDC, Loughborough University

The Water, Engineering and Development Centre (WEDC), UK, is exploring the possibility of supporting a student to carry out PhD research related to Menstrual Hygiene Management (MHM). In some exceptional cases, funding for international students may be considered under the WEDC scholarship programmes. In all cases, very strong academic credentials and an outstanding research idea will be expected.

If you are interested contact Dr. Julie Fisher outlining your relevant experience, qualifications and area of interest by 31 August 2012.

Related publication:
Crofts, T. and Fisher, J., 2012. Menstrual hygiene in Ugandan schools: an investigation of low-cost sanitary pads. Journal of water, sanitation and hygiene for development ; vol. 2, no. 1 ; p. 50-58. Available at: <https://dspace.lboro.ac.uk/dspace-jspui/handle/2134/9399>

Pakistan – Low Cost Handmade Sanitary Pads! From Design to Production

Low Cost Handmade Sanitary Pads! From Design to Production A Step Forward in Menstrual Hygiene Promotion in Pakistan, 2012.

By Hina Israr & Syed Shah Nasir, IRSP-Pakistan

ABSTRACT: “In order to manage the basic phenomena of menstruation, sanitary materials are used by women of all ages, almost from 14 to 45 years of age, though branded material are available in urban areas but difficult in rural, in those areas where such materials are available, they are expensive and difficult to afford and manage as well, so it has been planned by IRSP to introduce MHM specific low cost technologies in Pakistan for not just providing ease in their practices but also for paving way for women empowerment through involving them in large scale sanitary pad production.”

WEDC fact sheet – Menstruation hygiene management for schoolgirls in low-income countries

Instructions on how to make a basic cloth sanitary pad. From the WEDC factsheet on Menstruation hygiene management for schoolgirls.

WEDC has produced a usual fact sheet on the problems experienced by menstruating schoolgirls in low-income countries. Although its focus is predominantly sub-Saharan Africa, many of the issues raised are relevant to girls in most low-income countries, although there may be differences in popular practice and beliefs. The fact sheet also evaluates simple solutions to these problems including the use of low-cost sanitary pads, and suggests ways in which menstruation hygiene management (MHM) can be included in water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) programmes. It considers how menstrual practices are affected by cultural beliefs and the lack of education both at home and at school.

Crofts, T., 2012. Menstruation hygiene management for schoolgirls in low-income countries. (WEDC fact sheet ; 7). Loughborough, UK, Water, Engineering and Development Centre (WEDC). 8 p. Available at: <wedc.lboro.ac.uk/resources/factsheets/FS007_MHM_A4_Pages.pdf>

Menstrual hygiene management firmly on the agenda of regional workshops

A woman health volunteer is showing the group the sanitary napkins that she sells. BRAC programme Bangladesh. Photo: Christine Sijbesma/IRC

The third bi-annual Asia Sanitation and Hygiene Practitioners’ workshop, held in Dhaka, Bangladesh, from 31 January to 2 February 2012, reported notable progress in implementing menstrual hygiene into WASH programmes.

In 2008, menstrual hygiene management was signalled as a neglected area in WASH programmes. In 2010 the workshop participants pushed ahead and discussed necessary provisions for menstrual hygiene management in toilet design (washing facilities, sufficient space, incinerators) as well as issues of availability and affordability of menstrual hygiene materials.

A major hurdle remains the lack of awareness and lack of recognition that menstrual hygiene is a human right and health issue. In 2012, participants  concluded that menstrual hygiene programmes are now usually linked to school WASH, but efforts are needed to reach girls who are not in schools. Advocacy and hygiene promotion have to improve the awareness of both men and women about menstruation and menstrual hygiene management.

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Measuring WASH and food hygiene practices – post 2015 goals

A new paper reviews the case for the importance of hand, food and menstrual hygiene as candidates for post-MDG goal and target setting. Of the three themes, handwashing with soap at key times is the one which has been the subject of most research and therefore is associated with the strongest evidence base.

The paper was written by a team from the Hygiene Centre at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM), the IRC International Water and Sanitation Centre and the International Centre for Diarrhoeal Disease Research, Bangladesh (ICDDR,B) under contract to USAID. It is an output of the Hygiene Working Group, one of the four Post-2015 Monitoring Working Groups set up by the WHO/UNICEF Joint Monitoring Programme for Water Supply and Sanitation (JMP). The purpose of the background paper is to stimulate and inform discussion, but not to make any claims for consensus nor suggest that any of the definitions, indicators, goals or targets proposed are final.

In 2013 the United Nations General Assembly will be asked to decide what development goals the international community should seek beyond 2015. The decision will be made based on a proposal that will be submitted to the General Assembly. This proposal will include goals, targets and indicators pertaining to water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH). The indicators proposed will reflect principles associated with the human right to drinking water and sanitation.

Related web sites:

Full reference:

Biran, A., et al, 2012. Background paper on measuring WASH and food hygiene practices : definition of goals to be tackled post 2015 by the Joint Monitoring Programme. London, UK, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. Available at: <http://www.irc.nl/page/72911>

The ‘Tampon King’ who sparked a period of change for India’s women

Source: The Independent, June 29, 2012, by Andrew Buncombe

He was cast out by his fellow villagers, who believed he had gone mad, but now, Arunachalam Muruganantham is pioneering a positive change in women’s health. 

Meet Arunachalam Muruganantham, India’s “Tampon King.”

When Arunachalam Muruganantham spotted his wife gathering dirty rags in their home one day he asked her what they were for. If he was shocked by her reluctant response – that she was using them for her monthly period – he was even more taken back by her reply when he asked why she was not buying sanitary napkins in the shop. “If I buy sanitary napkins,” she had told him. “It means I cannot afford to buy milk for the family.”

The conversation spurred Mr Muruganantham into a frenzy of invention to try and produce an affordable napkin for women such as his wife. Such was his dedication, bordering on obsession, that he once wore a football bladder of animal blood to trial a prototype. He was forced from his home by villagers who thought his methods had become too perverse after he started collecting used napkins from medical students and storing them in his home. He was even abandoned – albeit temporarily – by his wife and mother, who believed he had gone mad.

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PATH – Developing an Affordable Sanitary Pad

Developing an Affordable Sanitary Pad

PATH’s solution is to develop and advance low-cost menstrual management options for girls and women in low-resource settings. Our finding from focus group discussions and literature reviews indicate that girls and women are
interested in disposable products that offer better absorbency and have a cheaper price tag than available options. There are also reusable options (cloth pads and menstrual cups) that can last for several years. These approaches require a higher up-front cost, access to clean water and soap, and thorough drying—resources that are not always available in poor communities. We are  currently exploring a hybrid concept (i.e., a combination of a reusable, fluidresistant sleeve with a disposable, absorbent core) to address the growing challenge of disposing of plastic-lined pads and to reduce the cost. This hybrid option could also offer girls and women the flexibility of using a variety of
absorbent materials that are available to them.

HSBC launches US$ 100 million water and sanitation partnership with WaterAid, WWF and Earthwatch

British multinational bank HSBC has launched a new US$ 100 million, five year partnership with WaterAid, WWF and the Earthwatch Institute. The HSBC Water Programme will bring safe water and improved sanitation to over a million people; tackle water risks in river basins; and raise awareness about the global water challenge.

The programme is backed-up by report [1] commissioned by HSBC, which warns that the predicted high-growth rate in several of the world’s most populous river basins may not materialise because of  their unsustainable water consumption . The report also highlights “the powerful economic rationale for improving access to freshwater and sanitation, at a time when total aid for water access and sanitation has actually declined”.

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Sanitation Matters: Health and Hygiene – Focus on Handwashing

Sanitation Matters: Health and Hygiene – Focus on Handwashing, April 2012 issue

Water Information Network, South Africa.

Contents: 

  • A Tool For Measuring The Effectiveness Of Handwashing 3-7
  • Five Best Practices Of Hygiene Promotion Interventions In the WASH Sector 8-9
  • Washing Your Hands With Soap: Why Is It Important? 10-11
  • Appropriate Sanitation Infrastructure At Schools Improves Access To Education 12-13
  • Management Of Menstruation For Girls Of School Going Age: Lessons
  • Learnt From Pilot Work In Kwekwe 14 -15
  • WIN-SA Breaks The Silence On Menstrual Hygiene Management 16
  • Joining Hands To Help Keep Girls In Schools 17
  • The Girl-Child And Menstrual Management :The Stories Of Young Zimbabwean Girls. 18-19
  • Toilet Rehabilitation At Nciphizeni JSS And Mtyu JSS Schools 20 – 23

School menstrual hygiene management in Malawi: more than toilets

School menstrual hygiene management in Malawi: more than toilets, 2012.

SHARE; WaterAid

This study identifies the needs and experiences of girls regarding menstruation. It draws upon participatory group workshops, a questionnaire and semi structured interviews with school-age girls in Malawi to make various recommendations, including lessons about menstrual hygiene management (MHM), girl-friendly toilet designs, and the provision of suitable and cheap sanitary protection.