Have you ever wondered what girls in poor countries do for feminine hygiene? If you’re like me, the thought might not have ever crossed your mind. But once it does…what do you think? How does a girl (and women, too) who owns nothing and has no money, deal with issues like feminine products? And how do they dispose of such things in countries where sewer, disposal and other systems we take for granted, aren’t equipped to deal with that massive waste?
Enter Days for Girls. This non-profit organization decided to tackle the problem of feminine hygiene head on once they looked into the problem. And what exactly is the problem? Girls miss up to 2 months of school per year because they don’t have anything to adequately help them deal with their monthly period. They are forced to stay in isolation, using whatever they can scrounge up (newspaper, mattress stuffing, corn husks, even rocks) to cope with this monthly natural part of life.
Added to this, missing school for a girl in a poor country can have devastating long-term effects that will follow her and her family for the rest of her life. It’s a pretty big deal. Proper hygiene gives these girls 180 days (over the 3 years the kits last) back to them. What would you do with 180 days? For the recipients of these hygiene kits, it means staying in school, or not missing work they can’t afford to take off. It helps them avoid isolation and sometimes even abuse. It’s a gift of DAYS for girls. A very precious gift indeed.
Once they saw the problem and came up with a solution, the Days for Girls team field tested what they came up with. They listened to the girls responses and suggestions, and modified their design to get it just right. Each kit a girl receives contains reusable feminine hygiene, underwear, a bar of soap (to wash soiled products), a Ziplock bag (to aid in washing while using very small amounts of water), visual instructions (good for any language) and a washcloth.
Volunteers all over the world donate time, fabric, supplies, to sew and assemble these kits which are taken to girls in need, wherever they live. Days for Girls ambitious goal is to reach every girl and woman all over the world with one of these kits before 2022.
I just recently heard of Days for Girls and was so excited to see there was a local branch. I went to a volunteer day, armed with my sewing machine, and helped out. It was an incredible experience. I’m hooked. I will be back.
And you know what else is so great about all this? doTERRA International supports Days for Girls with financial backing. How cool is that? I love this company!
If you’d like to know more about Days for Girls, visit their website here. And below is a TED Talk by the founder of the organization. It’s 18 minutes well spent.