In India, around 23 million girls are struggling to continue their education due to the lack of menstrual hygiene and sanitation units. The discussion of menstruation is still regarded as a forbidden subject in many households. Age-old myths continue to cripple our society, girls are forced to drop out of school and early marriage has adversely impacted lakhs of women for centuries. The absence of toilets, lack of access to sanitary pads, and knowledge of menstrual hygiene make women and girls vulnerable to major infections, which left unaddressed, affect reproductive health and their overall health.
J. B. Petit Ketto Fundraiser
The young minds of J. B. Petit High School, understand that access to proper sanitation and menstruation hygiene kits is key to reducing drop-out rates of school girls in the country. The students under the aegis of The Alpha Urbane Project came forth and took it upon themselves to raise funds on Ketto.org to enable these girls to break free of shame and constraints attached to menstruation.
Commenting on the student’s efforts to empower adolescent girls by providing access to gender-segregated sanitation units and menstruation hygiene kits, Mrs. Benaifer Kutar, Principal, J. B. Petit High School, said, “Lack of awareness and access to clean sanitation units are the primary reason for India’s poor menstrual hygiene scenario. Even today women in rural parts of the country resort to unsafe menstrual practices such as using cloth, ash, mud, and leaves to manage their monthly flow. I am proud of our students who are thinking above and beyond to enable and empower these adolescent girls. Collectively we decided to associate with Habitat for Humanity India’s ‘Stay at School
“As a housing non-profit organisation, Habitat for Humanity India believes that everyone should have access to decent shelter, improved sanitation, hygiene, and safe water at home. We thank J. B. Petit High School for supporting us and commend the efforts of students who are acting as change agents,” said Dr. Rajan Samuel, Managing Director, Habitat for Humanity India. Under its WASH (Water, Sanitation and Hygiene) program, Habitat India builds accessible sanitation facilities in schools and communities and for households. Habitat India’s Stay at School campaign helps girls break free from the stigma attached to menstruation by providing access to health and hygiene kits consisting of sanitary pads, counselling on menstruation, and building gender-segregated sanitation units in schools to reduce drop-out rates of school girls in the country.
The students of J. B. Petit High School have proved that through persistence and determination, anything can be achieved. Sarah Makani (President of the Student Council – Class 10) Diana Nagporewalla (Head Girl – Class 10) & Myra Bose (Grade 3) under the leadership of Mrs. Nawaz Cooper started a crowdfunding campaign on Ketto.org and raised over INR 27 lakh from over 1200 donors. The amount raised from the public will be used by the renowned NGO Habitat for Humanity India to ensure access to clean and well-maintained school sanitation units which are critical to help a girl to continue her education.