It is healthy. It is normal. Actually, if a girl is not having the monthly natural flow of blood, then, there is a worry.
For all girls worldwide, menstruation is a monthly reality. Yet in many low-income communities, girls still face serious challenges when it comes to managing their periods. Many girls still lack access to affordable hygienic menstrual products. Instead, they are forced to use improvised materials, such as leaves and dirty rags. However, these cannot hold the blood for long and many girls end up with stains in their clothes and this means that they may not return to school due to embarrassment and teasing from boys.
This situation has a negative impact on the girl child. Many young girls are forced to skip school during their period as they are embarrassed or do not have access to the facilities they need, while others drop out altogether. When girls drop out of school at an early age, they are less likely return to education, leaving them vulnerable to early marriage, violence and forced sexual relations.
In Uganda, It is estimated that 1 in 10 menstruating girls skip school four to five Days per month or drop out completely, and this is one of the biggest reasons for school dropouts of girls because of inconveniences during their menstrual periods.
Role of Sustain Micro Enterprise
Through the Girls Lead movement, we are helping to keep the young girls in school and reduce school drop out by providing sustainable menstrual solutions. Sustain Micro Enterprise is providing the girl child with Sanitary pads and also partnering with other organizations to train the girl child, parents and guardians on how to make reusable sanitary pads which is in itself a more sustainable solution. Empowering school communities, girls and parents with skills to make reusable sanitary pads is more sustainable for poor and struggling families.
Many of the girls start menstruation periods with no knowledge or with misconception and yet some parents and teachers are ashamed to talk about it. Sustain Micro Enterprise is reaching out the girl child, boys, schools, community, parents and teachers with Menstruation information. We believe that involvement of everyone who surrounds the girl child will help create a better and a safe environment for the girl child to thrive and see menstruation periods as normal. We aim at creating a less stigmatizing environment for the girls especially at school.