Investing In Teenage Girls For A More Just, Stable, and Peaceful World!
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One out of ten girls in Sub-Sahara Africa miss 1/4 of school days or drop out completely due to menstrual products being unavailable or unaffordable.
Malawian schools do not have enough resources to send schoolwork home with students. Thus these girls fall further and further behind.
To change this reality Africa Bags created : reusable washable menstrual pads.
Reusable Washable Menstrual Pads:
These pads are sold in kits. A kit includes a double sided purse for storage and discreet use, 3 base pads, 3 thick liners with wings, 2 thick liners, and 5 thin liners.
The kit is made entirely with African cotton. The cotton breathes which helps to keep odors away, is better for private areas, and makes for a rash free happier period.
The attrition rate for girls in Malawian schools is extremely high, and the consequences of girls leaving school early are extremely profound. According to the United Nations Population Fund, girls with less than seven years of schooling are more likely to be married by age 18, and early marriage is directly linked to an increased risk of HIV infection. Education is essential for EMPOWERMENT. Africa Pads is focused on the fight to keep girls in school! This kit will help a girl attend school full time so that she can be healthy, educated, achieve her dreams, and set out for a better future and a better Malawi.
Disposable pads are in general non-biodegradable and most of Africa has no trash collection system. Thus disposable pads, if used in Africa, usually wind up as litter becoming a health and environmental hazard. On average, a woman will throw away 250 to 300 pounds of pads or tampons into the landfill throughout her life (Flow: the Cultural Story of Menstruation, p. 238). Multiply that by 3.5 billion women and that is a lot of trash.
kits can last up to 5 years and reduce waste produced by disposable pads and tampons. Furthermore, menstrual blood is a natural fertilizer. The water that is used to soak Africa Pads during the cleaning process can be used on plants for fertilization purposes.
Sustainability and Empowerment:
is a totally self-sustaining business that uses African fabric and resources, teaches the Malawian women to make the pads themselves, and empowers them to run the business and sell the pads locally.
The Africa Bags village of Kamweko is now producing . These kits will be sold to local women who can afford them. Unfortunately, most schoolgirls cannot. Africa Pads is providing schoolgirls with pad kits and underwear to empower them to stay in school. For every year a Malawian girl stays in school her earning potential increases 20%! We are also building private girls’ restrooms, creating herbal gardens, and educating girls about their health to better support them during their monthly cycles.