Ashamed of Asking? by Go On India
A 14 years old girl named Akshita, living in a village named Jhutawad which is 86 kilometers away from district headquarters of Ujjain district of MP. She is studying in class - 8th, and always used dirty cloth pads during her periods. After school she helps her mother in the household and other chores. She likes to watch family shows as well as shows like Saregama, etc. She is not comfortable in talking to the opposite gender and can’t discuss the topic of sexual abuse and menstruation at home. We are trying to break this social taboo by providing a good designed education program. Our program design is on the mensuration cycle. We are providing awareness about the maturation cycle, so that the girls can live with dignity. We are developing social leaders so that they can empower the village women.
AIMS & OBJECTIVES
To empower 10 thousand girls of rural Madhya Pradesh to protect them from the infection while menstruation and sexual abuse. Our focus is mainly on three things:
Access of sanitary pads up to last women in the queue.
Awareness and education about the mensuration myths, problems, and solution.
Comfort to the female’s related to talking, buying and discussing personal hygiene
THE SOCIAL ISSUE
Menstruation is a phenomenon unique to girls. However, it has always been surrounded by taboos and myths that exclude women from many aspects of socio-cultural life. In India, the topic has been a taboo until date. Such taboos about menstruation present in many societies impact on girls’ and women's emotional state, mentality and lifestyle and most importantly, health. The challenge, of addressing the socio-cultural taboos and beliefs in menstruation, is further compounded by the low girls’ knowledge levels and understandings of puberty, menstruation, and reproductive health. Sex word which literally means Girl or Boy is elephant in the room and one of the biggest taboos in the society. Statics of India in case of sexual abuse is shocking, and it is increasing day by day. 98% of rapes being committed by people known to the children. Despite one in every two children being a victim of child sexual abuse, there continues to be a huge silence. In every 15 minutes one child is going through the sexual abuse which is going to impact the life of the child.
Go-On India will be directly working with school girls. We will give special training and will support them so that they go on to become a change maker. Go-On India will hire and train 2 girls fellow for a district called Nightingales who will be responsible for one district. They will organize awareness camps in schools and select 2 Chang-maker through a process for school and village representation. In the first stage they will select 30 change-makers from 15 schools and give them training to build a school network. Training program is designed in a manner that it covers all the aspects of awareness, communication, technical knowledge, sales, taboos and myths. These change makers will be our medium to provide sanitary napkin to girls, village women and to handle queries. A part of the profit of Go-On will be shared by these change makers. In the field of maternity pads we will work directly with the distributor and NGO.
When we talk about the social ROI it is very high and multilevel. At awareness level we are able to aware 10000 girls directly and manage access of quality menstruation's product for the same. At the school lead level (girl who is selected from school) we are not just building grassroot entrepreneurs but also inculcating the definition of dignity for them. It is a network of fellows, school lead who is available for 24/7 for the village girls and women to added any question related to menstruations, puberty and women hygiene.