South Africa is undoubtedly one of the wealthiest countries on the African continent, yet an average of 7 million young girls are missing a week of school a month, and an average of a full term a year. How then do we expect these young ladies to gain a decent education or even finish their high school education?
Your automatic thought should be WHY they are missing so much of their schooling. Is it gang violence or drugs? No. It’s because they do not have access to proper sanitary wear for when they get their monthly period. In fact many of these 7 million young ladies don’t even have proper underwear, never mind sanitary pads.
As business people we should seriously be concerned about the level of education and productiveness of our work force. It’s a rather simple equation – what you put in is what you will get out! If these young ladies had access to sanitary wear and underwear they would be going to school and getting an education.
Sanitary Sistas a Business Woman’s Association (BWA) initiative and some key sponsors – Dentsu Aegis Network – are taking this issue very seriously, but need to ensure that the cause of so many young girls missing school is addressed, but in order to do this they need to constantly create awareness of the issue and bring in other sponsors.
You may be thinking to yourself…..of hell it’s just another bottomless pit and how can I really help. It’s a very simple process.
Step 1 – make the decision to make a difference
Step 2 – make the difference
The process is very simple. A once off donation of R500 will ensure that one young lady receives a complete sanitary pack. The pack consists of the following:
- A bag with the child’s name of it
- Reusable and washable pads made of highly absorbent and quick drying material
- Under wear that allows the pads to be clipped into them – again the material is quick drying
- A wrist band with 28 beads on them so that they can keep track of their menstrual cycle over 28 days
- An introduction and follow up sessions with qualified workers to help guide young ladies through the menstrual process and give them the information they need to understand the process.
- Continued support of the girls in the programme for a year, as well as support for the teachers at the school
If you think about it a night at the movies for 4 with popcorn and drinks and parking money comes to almost R500 and then chances are the movie was lousy! So why not make the decision today and donate R500 and make a difference is one young girl’s life.
For more information contact Bongiwe Mkhize – [email protected]
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