Marketer Thoko Unyolo has launched Girls Time, a movement that aims to keep girls in school by improving their access to menstrual hygiene.
Unyolo will launch her advocacy with a Fund-Raising tea at Bingu International Conference Centre in Lilongwe on Wednesday.
“Unequal and inadequate coverage and access to menstrual hygiene keeps girls away from school. Many girls from underprivileged background fail to attend classes regularly due to lack of sanitary pads. This initiative aims to raise funds for supplying this vital girl need,” she said.
Unyolo said Girls Time also seeks to break the stereotypes and silence that surrounds girls’ menstrual health.
“It’s a subject least discussed and shared publicly by women of all ages. We need to be open about the issue. The more open we’re the more aware people become of the needs of girls in the area of menstrual health,” she said.
She said by raising the profile of girls menstrual health, Girls Time hopes to find solutions to issues that hinder access to basic menstrual hygiene tools and aids for girls. She cited poverty as one of the issues.
Where girls have no economic means to access sanitary pads, they keep quiet and resort to unhealthy alternatives. Unfortunately these pose a serious risk to their reproductive health. As a starting point, we want to raise funds and demonstrate what difference we could make if each one of us contributed a little something towards this cause,” she said.
The marketer said a ticket to the Fund-Raising Breakfast is going at K15,000 and that all proceeds from the event will go towards buying sanitary pads for girls.
She said Girls Time has partnered with 21-year Catherine Kita of Blantyre who makes re-cycled pads. Kita is founder of one of the fastest growing youth networks in Malawi, Youth Corner Girls Network-YOCONET.
Girls Time has selected Mphungu Primary and Tsokankanasi schools of Lilongwe as pilot centres of the initiative.
For her part, Unyolo is an established marketing professional whose career spans multi-national FMCG and financial services brands.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :