While she was at school, she noticed some blood on her skirt. She didn’t know what was happening to her and she was too ashamed to say anything.
A friend told her about a man who could get her some sanitary products, so she got some from him. When the next month came around, she went back to him again. But this time, he wanted something in return.
Each month, he took advantage of her desperation.
Our partner in Kisumu hears these kinds of stories regularly. Of girls who are abused and taken advantage of, all because of the stigma and shame around menstruation.
These young women are trapped in a vicious ‘period poverty’, without the ability to break free on their own.
Milele is currently working with more than 400 girls and teens, supporting them so their voices will be heard in their communities. It’s done through an after-school program, called ‘HerStory Campaign’, to grow their literacy, self-expression, and social/emotional skills.
Through mentoring these girls, they are encouraged to share their stories, advocate for themselves – and in the process – transform their communities.
The team need to grow their work with these girls to provide education and support with menstrual hygiene and reproductive health.
Girls in Kisumu are adversely affected by a lack of menstrual education and supplies. This makes them highly vulnerable, with older men taking advantage of the girls, resulting in numerous cases of sexual assault, abortions, HIV, sexually transmitted infections, and child mothers. Stories continue to emerge of young girls in Kenya forced to have sex in exchange for sanitary products.
That’s why our Milele team want to add reproductive health modules to their programs, including peer counselling sessions. Providing sanitary supplies would be a simple but powerful tool in keeping teen girls secure within their communities. This will cost US$2,880 (AU$4,097) annually.
To help grow this vital program and run basic hygiene education – please donate today! We believe this is a right every girl and teen should have access to. You can make that possible.
*Milele works alongside two other organisations – Global G.L.O.W and LitWorld – to deliver HerStory Campaign.