Menstrual hygiene promotion efforts for young girls

ASUCO has been funded by The Fund for Congolese Women – FFC to contribute to the improvement of the sexual and reproductive health of schooled and out-of-school girls in the commune of Karisimbi, in the province of North Kivu. 

Translated project title: Promotion of the sexual and reproductive health of young girls aged 12 to 22 in Karisimbi commune

What are we doing with girls? 

Since October 15, 2021, we have launched a project for young girls aged 12 to 22 in Goma/Karisimbi. Through our training activities, 60 young girls have been empowered in menstrual hygiene, in fighting against HIV/AIDS and other sexually transmitted infections and in making sanitary napkins. Girls are now engaged in educational talks and are gathered in 4 peer education clubs.  

Since the trainings, we have experienced positive transformations and girls are getting opportunities to share their stories and help each other. ASUCO’s team is doing the follow-up and encouraging girls to change culture that has maintained them under taboos that prohibited them to express themselves presenting their needs to their parents. 

The Fund for the Congolese Women – FFC has been interested to ASUCO’s project and has given funding that allowed ASUCO to organize the trainings. This organization has shown great engagement in supporting ASUCO’s activities through attending to the activities carried out by ASUCO in the interest of young girls. 

What are the changes? 

Only 2 out of 60 girls have testified that they always asked money to their parents for their sanitary napkins during their menstrual period. The lack of asking sanitary napkins to parents has exposed girls to dangerous diseases linked to dirty clothes they have been using. Through the training on making sanitary napkins, girls have decided to start helping their peers by making and selling napkins for a very reduced price. The girls who had been asking for money to their parents were about to stop and starting to use dirty clothes, because their families’ conditions were like they shouldn’t allow them ask for napkins while their don’t have anything to eat. 

Gisèle is one of the FFC staff assigned to support the activities of this project funded by FFC and executed by ASUCO. During her visits during the training activities carried out by ASUCO non-profit organization, she encouraged the young girls to take ownership of the activities carried out by ASUCO. To show their commitment, the young girls decided to set up their peer education clubs and to support each other during their educational talks. 

 

How interesting has been the training on making sanitary napkins! 

It was as unexpected for the young girls to find that the ASUCO non-profit organization was interested in their reproductive health. For young girls, learning how to make sanitary napkins meets their needs and saves their health. The testimonies of the young girls affirm that the subject seemed taboo in their community and that they were exposed to several bad information taken from the street and that this information exposed them to several diseases. During the training, the young people had no time to lose, as all their attention was turned to the trainer. Every girl wanted to know how she should make her own sanitary napkins and avoid getting infected with diseases related to poor care of their menstrual cycles. 

What does ASUCO plan for young girls?

3 conference sessions to exchange experiences will be organized by ASUCO with young girls members of peer education clubs and other young girls members of the community. ASUCO continues the follow up activities with peer education clubs while encouraging them in their activities. ASUCO intends to support young girls in their activities that can allow them to remain united in order to extend their interventions to many other young people in the community. Young peer educators are seen by ASUCO as potential leaders whom the community will count on to solve many challenges that young girls and women face.

How to help ASUCO to better support these young girls.

Girls are in need of obtaining flannel fabrics to start producing sanitary napkins for themselves in clubs and napkins to sell at a lower price to their peers and other girls in rural areas. Anyone interested in supporting these young girls can join ASUCO by donating here or through the ASUCO bank account following the details below: 

Account Number 00017-28005-74009890001-58 
Owner ASUCO ASBL
Swift Code TRMSCD3L
Bank Trust Merchant Bank S.A. (TMB)
RIB https://drive.google.com/file/d/10dSMEzOYjljzHbo9Q2tvD-5elyBGMMel/view?usp=sharing

With US $ 1000, ASUCO expects to save several lives and provide young girls with good menstrual hygiene by setting up a continuous activity of producing reusable sanitary napkins.
By making a donation to ASUCO, you help us increase the impact of actions undertaken under the support of the Congolese Women’s Fund and increase their sustainability.

If only 3.3% of girls in Goma testified to having the habit of expressing their needs for hygienic bands to their parents while the taboos are more serious in rural areas than in urban areas, it should therefore be concluded that multiple illnesses suffered by girls in rural areas are due to poor menstrual hygiene. Together, we can therefore help young girls in rural areas by making a specific donation so that they have access to sanitary napkins and training that can help them make their own napkins for their menstrual hygiene.

Follow how these young girls express themselves on the way they managed their menstrual periods before the training and how this training offered by ASUCO motivates them by opening them up to several opportunities to improve their health. In this short video, the trainer explains how girls can make their own reusable sanitary napkins and girls practice and explain how useful has been the training and its impact in their lives. Open the video!

Donate now to support ASUCO in its efforts!

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