No #CSE without Menstrual Health Hygiene

Call to Action: for ESA countries to accelerate the implementation of laws and policies on menstrual hygiene to end “period poverty”

The #YouthPower Driving #ESA network urgently calls on the responsible governments in Sub-Saharan Africa to prioritise menstrual hygiene for Adolescent girls and young women. The stark reality is that many school-going young girls miss an average of five school days every month( due to lack of sanitary wear ), significantly impacting their performance.

This is a recurring issue for many vulnerable girls in remote areas in the region. The gravity of this situation is evident in the fact that girls missing school undermines the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal 4, which calls for inclusive and equitable education and lifelong learning opportunities for all. The consequences of poor menstrual hygiene are alarming, with ‘1 in 10 school-aged girls failing to attend school during menstruation’ (WHO/UNICEF, 2013.

The World Bank, 2005, 2016). Period poverty is a harsh reality for many girls, forcing them to resort to unhygienic methods of managing their periods. This also undermines the UN SDG Goal 3, which aims to ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all ages.

The #YouthPower Driving #ESA network (Hope for Adolescent and Youth, Dzuka Cholinga Zambia, Jeneration Agenda Uganda, Towvirane Malawi and Positive Young Women Voices Kenya) joins the rest of the world in commemorating Menstrual Hygiene Day under the “Together for a #PeriodFriendlyWorld”. We call on all governments to adopt and implement laws, policies, and strategies that promote affordable menstrual hygiene products, enabling women and girls to meet their sexual rights.