Millions of girls and women in Africa have minimal knowledge about menstruation when they get their first period. Menstrual health remains a silent issue, where (poor) access to menstrual health management for girls and women is negatively influenced by social norms and hinders their daily activities, leads to stigma and discrimination, and has negative implications for their sexual and reproductive and mental health. This lack of information on menstrual health has a direct impact on access to education, food security, economic opportunities and reproductive health of young girls and women. It puts girl’s health at risk and negatively affects their school attendance as many girl’s miss school during their menstruation cycle or drop-out of school when they reach puberty .
Menstrual hygiene management (MHM) is an essential aspect of hygiene for women and adolescent girls. It empowers young girls to manage their menstruation safely, hygienically and with confidence. Menstrual Hygiene Day (MH Day) is a global advocacy platform that brings together the voices and actions of non-profits, government agencies, individuals, the private sector, the media and young girls to promote good menstrual health and hygiene (MHH) for all women and girls.
Kenya Girl Guides Association (KGGA) in partnership with YESS (Youth Exchange South to South) and Yunitok conducted trainings for girls in schools in Nairobi, Turkana, and Kisumu to break the silence, raise awareness and change the negative social norms around MHM.
Through polls jointly conducted by Kenya Girl Guides Association and Yunitok, the findings will be shared with decision-makers to prioritize and catalyze action for MHH at national and county levels and support girls and women with the necessary information, resources and support to manage their menstrual needs.