I am working with Hon’ble Member of Parliament, Dr. Kambhampati Haribabu, in Visakhapatnam, Andhra Pradesh. As a part of my efforts to generate awareness regarding sanitation in local schools, I have launched a small fundraiser to donate one month supply of sanitary napkins to a Govt. School here in Vizag. The napkins will be manufactured by a local NGO which employs physically challenged women, giving them livelihood to support hem and their families.
Sanitation, an important and essential aspect, of our daily lives has largely been overlooked in India until recent times. With Swachh Bharat and awareness generation, various issues which were earlier not thought of or overlooked upon have come to light. In case of schools, it is the need for a proper, functional girls’ toilet and the lack of protection against menstruation.
As per a survey done by AC Nielsen in 2010, lack of adequate menstrual protection leads to girls missing out on average about 5 days a month of school. Around 23% of girls drop out altogether after they start menstruating. About 80% women in India cannot afford sanitary napkins. Menstruation, something natural and physiological for women, is largely seen as a taboo in Indian society and not talked about openly.
So, to generate awareness on the issue, not just in the school but also among the local administration, I decided to take up this initiative. I am collaborating with fellow alumni friends from VNIT, who run Donatekart. You’ll be able to donate in kind to the NGO, post which napkins will be manufactured and donated to the school girls. In association with Rotary Club of Vizag Central, we will also conduct awareness camp by psychologists and gynecologists in the school. We plan to donate 700 packets and I’m hopeful that this campaign would be a success.
This is just a small drop in ocean, but then Rome was not built in a day. Do contribute by clicking on this link and share among your circles.