DONOR agency, SNV Netherlands Development Organisation, is promoting the use of reusable pads in Nkayi district, Matabeleland North to help children and parents who cannot afford buying sanitary pads.
BY MELODY CHIMHAU
Forty-six community groups and 70 school teachers joined hands on Wednesday in sewing the ramps assisted by some men in a programme funded by SNV.
Speaking at a schools sports carnival in Nkayi, SNV advisor Wamutshilani Nkala said they were promoting the programme of sewing reusable pads on the back of reports that some school girls were boycotting classes during menstruation.
“Some of the girls have been using cow dung and leaves and this touched us.
“As an organisation, we came up with the idea of reusable pads and it has been widely accepted in Nkayi,” Nkala said.
“Binga, Lupane and Nkayi are the most affected places and through this programme, we are hoping that every girl would enjoy her womanhood with proper sanitary wear,” she added.
Nkala said a recent survey by the organisation in Matabeleland North revealed that 300 girls were going to school without underpants, adding SNV was working closely with community elders to assist them.
“We conducted a survey and discovered that about 300 girls attending school did not have proper undergarments,” Nkala said.
“The girls will tend to stop going to school during their menstrual days.
“SNV has been working hand in hand with Wash and Unicef in implementing the use of reusable pads and proper undergarments.”
Nkayi district administrator Dumisani Dlamini who attended the event said men had embraced the programme.
“We have managed to bring men on board and they have been taught that this is a natural thing and there should be no discrimination when one is on her period,” he said.
“SNV is continuing to help by mobilising the community. People have been ignorant over this issue, but now action is being taken to help parents and young girls.”