Menstruation can be extremely difficult for women and girls.
It is even more difficult for women and girls living in poverty or developing nations who don’t have access to feminine hygiene products.
That is why the international organization, Days For Girls, was created.
Their goal is to change the status quo through menstrual care solutions, health education, and income-generation support.
Their menstrual care solution is the Days for Girls Kits, which contain washable and reusable menstrual products.
Not only does this reduce waste, but it assists girls and women who, in many parts of the world, have resorted to using rags, mattress stuffing, banana leaves, and other unsanitary and unhealthy products to deal physically with their menstrual bleeding.
Days for Girls prides itself on supporting dignified solutions and education that enables girls and women to never miss an opportunity because of their period – a completely natural and healthy biological occurrence that, for so many years, has been considered taboo.
In less than 10 years, they have managed to reach one million girls in over 110 countries around the world.
As a woman, I see the sheer value of organizations like this one. While it is critical that we continue to push for change – for equal wages, equal treatment, and equal career opportunity, it is integral that we don’t forget this element of the fight.
The belief and stigma that periods are to be shamed and considered ‘taboo’ have been embedded into the social construct of our modern society needs to change in order for us as women to be fully empowered.
Especially when we consider the stark reality that feminine hygiene products, while a necessity products are extremely costly.
Where does that leave women and girls who are living in poverty?
Students from the Sault College Nursing Program, Shannon Hutton, Jana Longo, Brianna Robinson, Joslin Boissoneau, and Darby Martin, want to find the answers.
Shannon Hutton, 3rd year nursing student, shares with SaultOnline, “For a group project we had to choose a population that is negatively affected by health inequality and identify an organization or initiative that is working to advocate for the rights of this population.”
She continues, “As our population, we chose women and girls in developing countries, and for the organization we chose Days For Girls. We then had to make a campaign to support it, so we have turned to the power of social media to bring awareness to the organization.”
If this is an issue that resonates with you, Days For Girls has a local chapter in Sault Ste. Marie.
You can get involved by taking one of their many free online courses or becoming a volunteer to create and distribute Days For Girls Kits as well as fundraise.