The theme for this year’s Menstrual Hygiene day is empowerment and positive change through education.
AmplifyChange grantee Strategies for Northern Development (SND) works in Northern Kenya to promote sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR) education in pastoral communities.
Women in pastoral communities, particularly adolescents and youth, lack access to SRHR services and adequate menstrual hygiene management.
The SND youth advocate group works to hold the government accountable for the full and responsible utilisation of funds allocated for adolescent reproductive and sexual health; promoting the meaningful participation of youth and women in decision-making policies and increasing access to youth-friendly services.
Within the first 6 months of the project, 5 schools in remote areas with a large population of girls were identified and provided with sanitary towels. Prior to this, students were absent from school during their periods. Since the project, the girls’ attendance and performance at school has improved.
“Adolescent girls were able to consistently receive dignitary towels and able to continue with their normal business during their menses
The students used to miss classes [but] now are consistently attending, thus improving retention and performance”.
Although more awareness creation is required to bring about behavioural changes, the project has received overwhelming support and appreciation from both state and non-state actors.