Menstrual Hygiene Management (MHM) in rural India.
In some parts of the world menstruation is still such a taboo that when a girl starts her period she is told she is ‘unclean’. She is not allowed to go to school, she is not allowed to go outside and play with her friends, she is not allowed to visit temple. Some girls are not even allowed to into the kitchen or their own home.
Dismantling the period taboo
Even the girls allowed to attend school during their period are discouraged, as bathroom facilities and privacy are lacking. Missing one week of school a month means many are not allowed to continue their education and are soon forced into an arranged marriage as young teenagers.
With grass-roots screenings of the Oscar-winning short film Period. End of Sentence and community sensitization meetings that include male heads of household, the MHM projects aims to dismantle the taboos surrounding menstruation.
By working with schools and ensuring access to hygiene products and private bathrooms, girls are encouraged to continue their education and live a normal life during their period.
Together with Stewards Trust and The Pad Project, sustainable jobs are created by installing a sanitary pad making machine in Hardoan, Uttar Pradesh. This not only offers economic opportunities for 15 local women, but ensures the girls in surrounding villages have discreet access to affordable and high quality hygiene products.