This article was first published on April 13, 2018
May 28 is the Menstrual Hygiene Day, set aside to highlight the challenges that girls and women experience in relation to menstruation and to highlight solutions to these problems. It also highlights the importance of good menstrual hygiene management.
For many girls in Africa, school is interrupted because of menstruation. This is due to lack of sanitary pads, lack of proper toilets as well as the stigma and shame surrounding menstrual hygiene.
The burden of purchasing sanitary products is on parents, or the girls themselves, usually with adverse consequences. Some private individuals and non-governmental organisations also fund and donate sanitary pads to schools and even hospitals.
The debate on menstrual health has been had in the parliaments in various countries, including Uganda, which said there was no money to implement such a program.
To this end, some countries have put in place laws and policies to ensure that this is a thing of the past. These countries are: