We have a lot to be thankful for this November. Here’s what we have been up to this month –
We initiated a project with the Project Pavitra team from Art of Living. We also conducted a baseline study with 120 girls from grades 5 – 12 (ages 11 – 20) from Jawahar, in the Palghar district of Maharashtra. We surveyed their knowledge about menstruation, use and frequency of changing absorbent (period product), method of disposing of the product, frequency of washing/changing the product, challenges faced in accessing sanitary products, amount of money spent on them every month and the impact of their period on their daily life.
Out of the 120 of menstruating respondents, 10% of the girls said that menstruation is a disease. In terms of disposal, 44.8% of the girls throw the used pads in the garbage while 20.5% and 34.5% use fire and burial respectively to dispose of them. Sadly, 9% of the girls wash their cloth pads with just water and 36.3% of them dry them inside the room. 42.3% girls feel ashamed to buy pads and over half the girls find it difficult to access sanitary napkins close to where they live. The worst out of all these statistics is the 32.5% of girls who miss 1-7 days of school, on an average, every month during their menstrual cycle. 16.6% of these report that they miss school primarily due to the inaccessibility of sanitary pads, 21% and 23% of the girls respectively, miss school because of the lack of disposal facilities for used pads or privacy to change and 19% of the girls miss school because they are afraid of staining their clothes.
These unfortunate statistics only increased our passion for a period positive country, and eventually, a more sensitive world.