We are seeking assistance and contributions to sustain our ongoing initiative providing dignity to our girls living in the slums during this difficult time. Most of these girls come from families that live under 2 dollar a day. Every little helps and can determine whether a girl stays in school or becomes pregnant. The sad reality being that young girls living in slums due to poverty are now resorting to trading sex for food and sanitary pads.
Period poverty is a major issue in urban slums of Mombasa (Kenya) and it’s environs. Young girls and women miss out on educational, social and economic engagements in life during their menstrual period because they can't afford sanitary pads. The COVID-19 pandemic which has caught the world by surprise, has also exacerbated the existing poverty and worsen the financial circumstances of these urban slum communities that were already struggling. The national policy on COVID-19 response, including short-term and long-term impacts of lockdown on the local, national and global economy, has limited the support to these communities which has led to many people being isolated and desperate for support.
The project aims at involving the local women from these communities, in the making and distributing reusable sanitary towels; to the women and girls in the urban slums of Mombasa County and its environs. This full-circle initiative helps to solve the immediate problem of period poverty, empowering women to realise their potential in their community whilst injecting money into the local economy and providing long term economic uplift. Long-term, we will help limit the ecological damage caused by disposable pads being thrown into sea ,rivers and on the streets in slum areas where there is no municipal waste collection.
As a community based organisation, creating thriving and resilient communities is at the heart of what we do, and we are committed to improving the lives of young girls and women by working with other partners in the community to realise their potential. We aim to involve the local women in the making and distribution of reusable/washable sanitary pads to give them back their dignity. We have an existing network for distribution as our not-for-profit volunteers on ground can reach more than 40,000 young women and girls annually. These pads will have a long operational use, therefore it will minimise the use of disposable pads which is hazardous to the environment.
It will have a cost-saving effect for local young women and girls by eliminating the monthly expense of buying disposable sanitary pads and tampons. The project will also economically uplift these young women by providing training and jobs for them to become seamstresses and project coordinators.
The project will have a positive environmental impact because it will decrease the amount of waste dumped in rivers and landfills by replacing disposable sanitary pads with washable, reusable pads.