We’re really pleased that by the end of January another 72 girls will have received clean, reusable sanitary pad packs, meaning that Her Education Matters will have provided 360 girls with packs since the project started in April last year.
There are challenges with production and distribution of these packs. In particular, we’ve struggled to get donations for pants and fabric and these now have to be purchased in Malawi. COVID-19 has also meant we’re facing a month’s delay on the distribution of phase 1 packs that were due in October for when the students returned following school closures. However, we’re still on track to complete the final pads by the end of December to be distributed in January.
The impact of COVID-19 has also highlighted the importance of good hygiene in the community. Obtaining soap in rural areas is incredibly difficult and expensive. Our partner African Vision (Landirani Trust) is aware of the importance of soap and they’re using this as the wage for the Mothers’ Group instead of reusable pads.
Lastly, we’re in the final phase to complete the sixth washroom at Masiye Government primary school in the next six weeks. This will provide the necessary privacy and dignity for school girls to manage their menstrual hygiene and promote good attendance at school.