GWERU: Women Coalition of Zimbabwe (WCOZ) Gweru Chapter’s Young Women’s Forum is sourcing sanitary pads for under privileged girls throughout the province.
Young Women’s Forum chairperson Grace Mazambani said research had revealed that 72 percent of girls in the rural areas do not use sanitary pads resorting for unhygienic methods.
She said they hope to empower the girl child through this campaign which is in its second year.
“Findings of one research revealed that at least 72 percent of girls in the rural areas are not using sanitary pads.
“Reports have also suggested that women and girls are using cow dung, old pieces of cloth and even leave for sanitary wear. This exposes them to all types of infections and cervical cancer,” she said.
She also said the mobilisation would culminate in donations to about 100 beneficiaries from the seven districts of the province during this year’s International Day of the Girl Child on October 11 this year.
The theme for this year’s International Day of the Girl Child is “My voice, an equal future”.
“How do we ensure an equal future for a girl who misses school for an average of five days a month because she has no sanitary wear to use?
“This is our small way of contributing to that equal future by restoring menstrual dignity and keeping our girls in school. This is our small way of giving back confidence to the girl who can’t afford to part with a dollar every month for pads alone,” she added.
Mazambani called on the government to act on the issue of sanitary pads which are still expensive with a pack pegged costing USD1.
Distribution of the donated pads would be on girls living with disabilities as well as orphaned and other vulnerable girls.
“Districts would get their share through focal persons resident there,” Mazambani said.