Menstrual hygiene is one of the most important, yet neglected, health issues in the developing world. In India, approximately 70% of all reproductive diseases are caused by poor menstrual hygiene.
A Unicef study revealed that 10% of Indian women believe that menstruation is a disease. Limited access to information, as well as cultural taboos and social stigmas attached to menstruation have a negative impact on the lives and health of millions of girls and women.
It is a taboo subject, surrounded by silence and shame, that also restricts women’s access to normal activities and services. Many girls and women miss school and work every month because they do not have access to sanitary pads.
In June 2013, we launched our Menstrual Health and Hygiene Program which expanded into Jharkhand in 2015. Through this project, we distribute low-cost subsidized sanitary pads to rural women and girls and raise awareness about the importance good menstrual and personal health practices in local schools and villages. More 6000 people attend each year these information sessions.