Category Archives: Blog

That Time Of The Month

23% of girls drop out of school once they start menstruating
66% girls are unaware of menstruation

3%

“That time of the month” campaign will impact 1500 girls.The campaign will involve conducting 3 Menstrual Hygiene Awareness sessions per school and improve access to good quality sanitary pads, by supplying each girl with her annual need of 24 packets. The awareness session will be conducted by experts of Sukhibhava Foundation and Saral Designs will provide best hygiene products to manage periods.

Through this campaign, we aim to enable girls to manage their periods safely, hygienically and with dignity.

It only takes Rs. 999 to equip one girl with knowledge and habits to fight reproductive track infections, missing days of school and lack of confidence.

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Knowledge and Implementation Partner

Sukhibhava Foundation
www.sukhibhava.org.in

Sukhibhava Foundation, is a social enterprise working in the intersection of urban health, community change and empowerment. We aim to change the narrative around this by creating awareness about menstrual health and providing access to affordable sanitary pads to women and girls from underprivileged communities. We create a behavioural change from biological, sociological, gender-related and rights perspectives.

8 people who broke menstruation taboos!

There is a lot of amazing work happening across the globe on menstruation. People have broken taboos in different ways, by being and by doing. Here is a list of 8 such amazing people!

  1. Kiran Gandhi
    1
     A musician and a Harvard graduate, 26 year old Kiran, completed the London Marathon during her period without a pad or a tampon, bleeding free, giving out a strong message to the world.
  2. Anshu Gupta
    2Anshu Gupta, founder of Goonj and a Magsaysay award winner, believes that that the problem lies in the fact that menstruation has been made into a women’s issue. Goonj turns cloth into an affordable, clean and easy to use napkins for rural women.
  3. Co-Exist
    3To break the taboo of menstruation , a Bristol based firm Coexsit has introduced a “period policy” where they provide women leave if they suffer pain during periods.
  4. Dilip Kumar
    4
    To cater to the menstrual needs of urban poor women, Dilip founded a social enterprise Sukhibhava, which works from distributing low cost napkins to organizing information sessions.
  5. Aditi Gupta
    5 Aditi has been working in shattering the myths and educating women and girls about menstrual health and hygiene through her website, Menstrupedia.
  6. Nasreen Jehan
    6
    A fifteen year old student from Bihar, Nasreen Jehan, proudly wears a yellow and red beaded bracelet on her wrist to keep track of her menstrual calendar and talk about menstruation with my friends.
  7. Prakriti Kandel
    7
    15 year old Prakriti Kandel writes her novel, Imposter, a story set in a society where menstruation gives women superpowers.
  8. Anushka Dasgupta8Anushka, a high school senior from Kolkata, shared a picture of her stained pants on Facebook as she wanted to start an honest conversation about the existing menstrual stigma.

We, at Saral Designs, love them for their kickass work. We aim to contribute to field by making affordable high quality sanitary pads and making them available in areas where they are needed the most.

Designing a Better Menstrual Hygiene Future

At Saral Designs we have one primary focus in mind- to make sure that one day each woman has access to the right products during her periods. As a nation, we are far from that goal right now.  Only 12% of India’s 355 million menstruating women have access to the right products. The 88% women who do not have access to the right products  resort to unsanitary means such as cloth and husk sand. The biggest barrier for them is affordability. And our experience has shown that often when a product is unaffordable, there are a lot of myths surrounding the use of the product. This compounded by the fact that periods is already a taboo topic makes our job difficult, if not unsurmountable. We are here to change the conversation, speak scientifically about our bodies, and make sure that we are constantly moving towards a situation where every woman has access to a period pad and uses it without apprehension.

23% of the girls drop out of school when they start their periods. This is something we are pushing to change as well. The more girls that drop out of school, the less we are able to affect mindsets and move towards a more equitable society. So this definitely needs to change. We take small steps towards it, for example by Suvidha our sanitary napkin vending machine that allows for girls to have access to sanitary pads even in school.

But we realise that the first step towards changing any of this is to start by changing the conversation. Keeping this in mind, we held activities over the span of three days from 25th-27th May in Karjat, Maharashtra to connect with women who have not had access to resources so far or have been subject to taboos that can have crippling effect on their health. This was a part of our effort to do something meaningful for Menstrual Hygiene Day.

Each day around 70 women participated in our activities. Our activities were designed to involve them in getting a conversation started around periods, “educate” them about the right products and the right  and get them to burst the myths that have surrounded conversations around periods in their communities. We decided to create awareness by the means of games.

We made them blow baloons and then think of the things that are bothering them..we made them burst the baloons (as a symbol of forgetting their miseries and enjoying, many women are often crippled by their troubles and have stopped being carefree). For us, any significant conversation starts with a happy state of mind.

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We made them play Chinese whisper. At the end of it, like most times with this game, they got their phrase wrong. This was an attempt to show them how period myths propagate and inaccurate stories spread.

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The last game was that of passing the parcel. The box had a period related question. If you get it right, you get a gift. Questions were testing their knowledge on myths, and general knowledge based on biology of periods.

We also had FAQs around access, affordability, safe disposal and other things.

We are still growing and our attempts are a step in the direction of our goals. If you want to get involved or want to buy our products, write to us at contactus@saraldesigns.in or +91-9029330401. You can also purchase our products at the following e-commerce websites: AmazonShopcluesEbay

This Menstrual Hygiene Day let’s strive to create a better future where girls don’t need to drop out of schools due to periods and women don’t need to be crippled due to lack of access or not knowing the right information.