Empowering the Period

The way we talk (or don’t talk) about menstruation is crucial for empowering girls around the world. It’s time to start talking. We’re calling on those who care about women and girls to join #WomenStrongWarriors, and support the fight for access to menstrual and reproductive health education, sanitary pads and basic facilities, such as school toilets.

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Replacing Stigma with Information and Resources

Young women in many countries lack access to information, proper menstrual facilities and products. They face shame over a natural process. Girls miss school or drop out altogether because of their period, putting them at a financial and educational disadvantage compared to boys and setting them up for a lifetime of disempowerment.

Educating girls is one of the highest-yielding investments in the economic growth of developing countries so keeping them in school is essential. At the individual and family level, education improves a woman’s ability to delay marriage, survive childbirth, raise healthier and better-educated children, and emerge from poverty.

You can make a difference with even a small financial contribution — see how your donation can help change a girl’s life, now and for years to come:

  • $12 can buy a girl a year’s worth of sanitary pads
  • $25 pays for two packets of sanitary pads, a monthly recording chart and pencil
  • $50 buys a menstruation kit, with a year’s worth of pads, panties and soap
  • $100 buys a girl a menstruation kit for two years
  • $200 provides menstruation kits for four girls in a WomenStrong location of the donor’s choosing
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Destroying Myths, Removing Stigma, Celebrating Being a Girl

WomenStrong International collaborates with Consortium members working on the ground in Ghana, Haiti, India, and Kenya to train girls and boys on puberty, menstrual and reproductive health and hygiene. Including boys, men, mothers, teachers, health workers and others in these trainings helps break the silence around menstruation, destroys negative myths and misinformation, and removes the stigma from a biological process that should be celebrated.

WomenStrong Consortium members work at the community level to empower women by providing menstruation education and essential resources to young women and girls. Below is just a glimpse of the type of work our partners do each day.

Women’s Health to Wealth - Kumasi, Ghana

Women’s Health to Wealth, in collaboration with Marie Stopes International, held meetings on reproductive health for several hundred girls that included information on puberty and menstruation. Women’s Health to Wealth also held discussions with junior high school students in four school districts, where teen girls talked about menstruation.

The organization then identified girls for whom purchasing sanitary pads was difficult, and used this information to create a pilot program where girls could receive a free reusable sanitary kit containing reusable flannel pads, panty liners, soap, and face a monthly menstrual record that can last up to 36 menstrual cycles. What WomenStrong learned from the experience was then shared across the Consortium.

Alice Visionary Foundation Project - Kisumu, Kenya

Alice Visionary Foundation Project hosted a training for girls and boys on puberty and menstruation. By including boys, men, mothers, teachers, health workers and others in training, WomenStrong Consortium members help break the silence around menstruation, destroy negative myths and misinformation and remove stigma that keeps girls out of school. Following the training, when possible, each student received a personal hygiene pack containing soap, underwear, a toothbrush and toothpaste and, for girls, sanitary pads.


Resources

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Spread the Love: Share our #PeriodProblems Infographic

WomenStrong International

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WomenStrong International “Empowering the Period” Press Release

WomenStrong International

Share on Social

Some girls are shut out and isolated from their community until the bleeding stops. #PeriodProblems

Worldwide, only 12% of girls have access to the supplies they need. #PeriodProblems

Girls can miss up to 5 days of school each month when menstruating. #PeriodProblems

In many countries, adolescence makes girls immediate targets for violent sexual attacks. #PeriodProblems

In Kenya, 65% of women and girls don’t have enough money to buy sanitary pads. #PeriodProblems