International Menstrual Hygiene Day at Kondo Primary School, Machakos

On 28th May every year, we get to celebrate Menstrual Hygiene Day after its first celebration in 2014. Menstrual Hygiene Day is a global advocacy platform where silence is broken, awareness raised around menstrual hygiene health. This day is marked by urging various stakeholders to be creative when talking about menstrual hygiene. It enables a larger population to be reached especially in the current digital era.

For instance, the menstruation bracelet which is a global symbol for menstruation requires one to bring out their creativity while making it.

Stakeholders in the menstrual hygiene management have taken up the responsibility of ensuring the vision of Menstrual Hygiene Day is achieved. Basic information about menstruation is inadequate in schools and communities because menstruation talk is still governed by loud silence and still consider it a taboo. Project Somesha engages both menstruators and non-menstruators to be part of menstrual hygiene management conversations to equip them with adequate knowledge and skill about menstruation.

This year Project Somesha marked the day at Kondo Village, Yatta, Machakos County. We were privileged to celebrate the day with young boys and girls from Kondo Primary School.

Project Somesha was honoured to speak about menstrual hygiene and sustainable menstruation.

When we started the session, the boys felt that menstruation was a girl’s issue and hence they were not comfortable talking about it. Towards the end of the session, they were actively contributing towards the discussion and they had questions to be answered. Through the session, we were beautifully surprised at the number of participants who volunteered to demonstrate how the menstrual products were used and who were curious to know more about some of the products they had never seen like the menstrual cups.

This year’s theme for Menstrual Hygiene Day is Action and Investment in menstrual hygiene and health. It is evident that to end period poverty, we must invest heavily on menstrual hygiene and health. One in ten girls misses in Kenya because of her period, this is because of lack of access to menstrual products. For Project Somesha, investing in sustainable menstrual products is a cause we take seriously because, presenting a menstrual cup to a young girl who will end up using it will give her freedom for about 5- 10 years.

We were happy to know that some girls in the school have adopted the use of washable pads and one of them was happy taking us through the process of using and caring for the washable pads.

We would like to appreciate all stakeholders and individuals working tirelessly to ensure that young girls and women have a safe and dignified menstrual hygiene management. Together let’s support her menstrual cycle.