Home Health WaterAid Advocates for Affordable and Accessible Menstrual Hygiene Products

WaterAid Advocates for Affordable and Accessible Menstrual Hygiene Products

Social Menstrual Hygiene
Ms Fauzia Aliu

WaterAid Ghana, a Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) focused organisation, has urged the government to ensure that menstrual hygiene products are accessible and affordable to all women and girls to accelerate the attainment of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

It said despite the progress made, menstrual hygiene management remained a major challenge for women and girls especially those in rural communities and attributed the cause to the inaccessibility and expensive nature of menstrual hygiene products such as sanitary pads.

“We commend the government for its recent decision to remove taxes on locally manufactured sanitary products. This is a significant step forward and demonstrates a commitment to addressing menstrual hygiene challenges. However, we must recognize that this alone is not enough.

“We need to ensure that these products are not only tax-free but also affordable and accessible to every girl and woman, regardless of their economic background,” Ms Fauzia Aliu, Advocacy Campaigns, and Inclusion Manager, WaterAid Ghana, made the call at Bolgatanga during the commemoration of this year’s Menstrual Hygiene Day.

It was organised by WaterAid Ghana and held on the theme “Period Friendly Ghana” and brought together various stakeholders including government officials, traditional authorities, and school children.

It was part of the Sexual Health and Reproductive Education (SHARE) project being implemented by a consortium led by Right to Play, Forum for African Women Educationalists, FHI360 and WaterAid Ghana with funding support from Global Affairs Canada.

Ms Aliu indicated that menstrual hygiene was not just about women’s issue but a human right, public health, and economic issue, which had been shrouded in silence for far too long.

She therefore called for collective efforts from all stakeholders to address the issue and enhance the rights of women and girls to achieve gender parity.

“The lack of education about menstruation, persistent cultural taboos, limited access to affordable and hygienic menstrual products, and inadequate sanitation facilities all contribute to a cycle of poverty and inequality.

“These barriers not only undermine the health and dignity of women and girls but also restrict their educational and economic opportunities,”

The Advocacy Campaigns and Inclusion Manager reiterated the commitment of WaterAid Ghana to bridging the gender gap through education, collaboration with stakeholders to make menstrual hygiene products accessible and affordable, provision of improved sanitation facilities such as toilets as well as influence policy direction to achieve sustainable development.

“When we talk about creating a “Period Friendly Ghana,” we envision a country where every girl can attend school without fear or shame, where women can work and participate fully in society, and where no one is held back by something as natural as menstruation” she emphasised.

Naba Baba Salifu Atamale Lemyaarum, the Paramount Chief of the Bongo Traditional Area, suggested that free provision of sanitary pads should be integrated into the government’s flagship programme, the Free Senior High School as part of measures to promote menstrual hygiene among young girls.

“This is because a lot of the girls come from poor homes and it is always difficult to come by sanitary pads and some are forced to give themselves out to boys in order to get money to buy sanitary pads and end up getting pregnant,” he added.

In a speech read on his behalf, Dr Bin Salih, the Upper East Regional Minister, said menstrual hygiene was a development concern and stakeholders must work together to ensure that girls and women lived dignified and empowered lives.

Send your news stories to newsghana101@gmail.com Follow News Ghana on Google News



Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

error: Content is protected !!
WP Radio
WP Radio
Exit mobile version