By Habila Victor, Kaduna
Center for Media Advocacy for Mother and Child (CAMAC) in partnership with Newsweb Express, have distributed free sanitary pads to 100 girls in Kaduna State, to commemorate the 2021 Menstrual Hygiene Day.
100 girls in Abakwa Community in Kaduna North and Government Secondary, Ungwan Boro in Chikun Local Government Areas benefited from the gesture by the NGO.
Executive Director of CAMAC, Alex Uangbaoje, said the free distribution of sanitary materials to young girls in Kaduna State, especially to the most disadvantaged and vulnerable girls is a continuation of a campaign they launched in 2020.
“As an organization, CAMAC believes that providing women and girls in Kaduna schools and communities with free sanitary pads will not only improve their healthcare, menstrual hygiene, fuel sustainable economies that will benefit societies, but it will also boost their confidence and comfort within and outside the community.
“We believe that hygiene process is not only to be taken by the girl or woman alone, but also by the society through the provision of a friendly menstrual environment. He noted.
Uangbaoje, who was represented by CAMAC’s Education Coordinator, Milla Michael, further said “we also believe that to get optimum performance of women and girls, they should be given free access to sanitary pad. Condoms are free and affordable, sanitary pad should be made free and accessible for girls, because menstruation is compulsory but sex is a matter of choice”.
He disclosed that this year CAMAC got funding support from Newsweb Express, an online Newspaper to purchase the sanitary pads and other logistics for the project for one hundred girls in one community and one secondary school in Kaduna.
The Executive Director added that it started a campaign for period friendly facilities in 2020 which was launched in Kaduna.
Menstrual Hygiene Day is celebrated 28 May every year to create awareness and highlight the importance of good menstrual hygiene management. This year’s theme is “Action and Investment in Menstrual Hygiene and Health.”
In her remarks, the Women Leader of Abakwa Community, Zulaihat Muhammed Bello, who expressed delight about what she called “huge contribution” by CAMAC, said “such opportunities are rare, we appreciate them for recognizing our community as one of the beneficiaries.”
According to her only NGOs such as CAMAC who have dedicated their resources for service to humanity can make such donations.
She called on Government to budget specially for menstrual hygiene, stressing that it would save women, especially the vulnerable and rural ones of some diseases.
The Principal of GSS Ungwan Boro, Mrs Jonah Gandu, thanked CAMAC, for choosing her school as one of the beneficiaries of the project, saying “I am glad you chose us to be part of this and I pray that God use your organization to do greater things.”
On her part, Asmau Tanimu, 17, said most girls within the age range of 13 -20 years lacks knowledge of menstrual hygiene, saying more needs to be done to help vulnerable girls and women in the society.
Asmau expressed her gratitude to CAMAC over such a sensitisation program and the donation of free sanitry pads to the vulnerable girls and women in Abakpa Community.
While thanking the NGO for her contribution to the safety and healthy living of women and children, another beneficiary, Hassana Abdullahi advised women to avoid usage of clothes during menstrual period, describing it as dangerous to their health.
She stressed that the distribution of free sanitary pads by CAMAC should be emulated by more NGOs and the government at state and federal levels.
CAMAC is a media advocacy group that focus on advocating for policies and programmes that favour vulnerable women, adolescent girls and children in areas of education, health, child’s rights, protection, development and survival, while also drawing the attention of government and other stakeholders to their plight, with the view to finding lasting solutions to their problem. As well as creating awareness and sensitizing the public on the above areas.