This year the UN International Day of Education is focussing on investing in people, prioritising education. To us at Power Of Pads that is music to our ears as it encapsulates what we are trying to achieve in rural Kenya. By reducing period poverty girls and women can take their rightful place in the world, starting in the classroom.
Education is the key to economic, social and political transformation and in a time of growing division in gender equality it is essential that girls are given the tools to enable them to reach their potential as a matter of course. As we have witnessed in rural areas, where income is extremely low, there is little money to spend on extravagancies. Yes, sanitary pads are sometimes seen as an extravagance. Consequently, in these families, girls will miss a week of school each month, amounting to 20% of their school time. This is often considered normal but the obvious consequence of this is that girls fall behind and this leads to a depressing situation where they give up on education all together, frequently becoming pregnant and remaining vulnerable to abuse. So the cycle of poverty continues and inequality gets larger.
However Power Of Pads is making a difference. Working through partner organisations in Kenya, small projects and businesses are being set up making reusable sanitary pads, funded by Power Of Pads. So far 4,990 pads have been made and distributed to 949 girls. Those girls are being invested in as the UN International Day of Education has suggested. They will be able to rightfully take their place in the classroom and in the future. Thank you to all of you who make this work possible.