The Harsh Reality

Today we delve into a topic that was and is still considered a big taboo in most societies and religions, MENSTRUATION.

What is menstruation? It is the monthly discharge of blood and the shedding of the lining of a woman’s uterus through the vagina if a pregnancy did not occur. Just like farting, sweating, pooping or peeing, it’s a natural and a very healthy process that takes place in a woman’s body hence naturally helping to cleanse and flash out toxins. Menstruation or period as it is popularly known is a recurring process that starts from a woman’s early teen years until menopause. Despite it being a natural process and something, we totally have no control over, it’s an experience which carries negative connotations.

A menstruating woman is perceived as ‘unclean’ disgusting and generally treated as an outcast in the 2 or 7 days she’s on her periods.  Growing up, a girl learns that a woman’s greatest shame, is her periods. Because of this internalized resentment, menstruation even in the contemporary society remains a largely untackled topic. It’s a topic discussed in whispers and hushed tones. It is due to this stigma that society constantly continues to sweep under the carpet the numerous challenges menstruating women all over the world face. Unaffordability of sanitary towels being the major one.

It has been estimated that 2/3 of women in Kenya cannot afford sanitary towels monthly.  Over 850,000 school going girls both in rural and urban informal settlements such as Mukuru kwa Njenga, Kibera just to mention but a few, miss school an average of five days each month.

While the cheapest packet of sanitary towels costs around 50 shillings, this price of such a basic commodity is still way beyond the reach of a girl residing in Kibera slums. It’s still way beyond the reach of that girl in Mukuru kwa Njenga slums whose parents are struggling to feed her and her eight siblings every night. It’s beyond the reach of that girl whose only idea of breakfast is the  sugarless black tea that she takes every morning before rushing to school.

Because of this high pricing, these girls from the slums go for the cheapest but very unhygienic options; the use of old mattresses, old clothes and rags, newspapers. Anything that could absorb the menstruation blood. This in turn makes them not only very uncomfortable and unable to attend school due to fear of leakage but also susceptible to infections.

Additionally, slum girls as young as 15 years old reportedly engage in transactional sex. Sex in exchange for a packet of pads. This in turn leads to early pregnancies, STIs and subsequently leads to their dropping out of schools.

Sad as it is, this is the harsh reality. This is the truth that every other slum girl in Kenya and all over the world must face.

 

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You can however make a difference today.  You can make a girl smile. You can keep a girl in school. By donating…

Your generosity and kindness will go a long way in restoring a girl’s hope. Your 10 shillings will make the much-needed difference.

“Giving is not just about donating its about making a difference” -Kathy Calvin

JOIN YOUTH FOR CHANGE IN MAKING A DIFFERENCE, SEND YOUR DONATION TO TILL NUMBER 800682

By Millicent Maina aka Mylo

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YFC SANITARY TOWELS CAMPAIGN

 

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YOUTH FOR CHANGE

ABOUT US 
Youth for Change often abbreviated as YFC is a group dedicated to advocating for the
rights of the destitute in the society. The group, formed in April 2016, is managed
by firm and capable youths from across Kenya.
The group is registered with the Department of Social Development under the
Ministry of East Africa Community, Labour and Social Protection as a Community
Based Organization.
VISION
Afro-optimism is the key.
MISSION
Better world through kindness to the less fortunate.
SOCIAL MEDIA
FACEBOOK: YFC Nairobi
TWITTER: @YFCNairobi
INSTAGRAM: @YFCNairobi
EMAIL ADDRESS: yfcnairobi@gmail.com
TILL NO.: 800682 (YOUTH FOR CHANGE)
PHONE NO.: +254 706 541 824 (Yvonne Ndubi)

 

yfc
YFC SANITARY TOWELS CAMPAIGN
The Sanitary towels Campaign for underprivileged girls in the informal settlements
seeks to give the girl child in the informal settlements an equal chance to compete and
lead a fulfilled life. This is the Second Project for YFC.
OBJECTIVES
 To distribute sanitary towels to 500 girls from the targeted informal settlement
schools by December 2018.
 To increase awareness in 80% of informal settlement schools on proper
menstrual hygiene by December 2018.
 To assist the communities come up with sustainable projects to ensure
availability of sanitary towels to girls in informal settlement schools.
 To lobby with other Non-Governmental Organizations involved in projects in
the informal settlements to ensure girls have access to sanitary towels.
TARGET
The campaign targets to reach girls in secondary and primary schools in the five
selected informal settlements in Nairobi Kenya. The First Phase (which will begin in
June 2018 and run through to December 2018) will focus on informal settlements
around Nairobi’s Eastlands area. The Second Phase of the project will kick start in
February 2019.
Targeted informal settlements (Phase 1):
 Mukuru Kwa Njenga
 Mukuru Kwa Reuben
 Sinai
 Korogocho
SOURCES OF FUNDS
Member contributions
Every month members are expected to pay a monthly fee of 200 shillings to
enable the group’s activities and projects. The money contributed by the
members will be used to purchase the sanitary towels to be distributed and
facilitate movement of the group members during the campaign.
Events
YFC organizes events e.g concerts and Karaoke in Nairobi County with an aim
of raising funds. For the Sanitary Towels Project, the Group is planning to hold
the Rock For Charity event on May 12th 2018 at the Blues Restaurant to raise
more funds. The event will be promoted through social and mainstream
media.

Donations
Donations of all kinds from well wishers and people who support the YFC
course will be used to run the sanitary pads campaign.
 Other sources
DISTRIBUTION
To ensure the sanitary towels are distributed to girls in the informal settlements, YFC
will work jointly with selected school teachers from selected secondary and primary
schools. More research will be conducted to identify a focal person to work with
within the settlements.
PARTNERSHIP
So far the Group has managed to bring on board the Pad Heaven Initiative Limited,
who will sell the dignity pack reusable sanitary towels at a discounted price and
provide trainers as well during the visits to the informal settlements.
WHY REUSABLE SANITARY TOWELS?
1. Cost
Reusable sanitary towels are cheaper compared to the disposable ones. At
Kshs. 900.00 a girl will get sanitary towels that will last the whole year, a pair
of panties and a menstrual hygiene book.
2. Environmental friendly
Garbage is Nairobi’s largest headache; some of this garbage usually ends up in
the drainage systems causing blockage. Reusable sanitary towels are
environmental friendly as they are made from environment friendly materials
such as clothes, and in turn take quite some time before being disposed off.
3. Sustainability
This is one of the most sustainable solutions to the sanitary towels menace in
this country, as well as globally. They are cost friendly and harmless to the
environment, at the same time providing employment within the informal
sectors (in line with the UN – Sustainable Development Goals 2030).

BUDGET

ACTIVITY/ITEM NO. OF UNITS UNIT COST TOTAL
Meetings 3 N/A N/A
Transport N/A N/A N/A
Media & Advertising (t-shirts, posters and brochures) T-Shirts : 30

Posters: 10

Brochures: 20

400.00

70.00

50.00

12,000.00

700.00

1000.00

Sanitary Towels 500 (Dignity Pack) 900.00 450,000.00
Miscellaneous (Drinks, Snacks, Pens, Note Books for members and Trainers) N/A N/A 36,300.00
TOTAL     500,000.00

 

 

 

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