India: Sanitary napkins & road to better health care
Nearly half-a-billion of Indians lack access to basic sanitation. Women’s health especially suffers in light of the poor conditions with the majority of women in India unable to afford sanitary napkins during menstruation, thereby resorting to unhygienic solutions that increase their health risk. According to interviews conducted by MasterPeace India in rural villages, 73% of women report using cloth during menstruation, 34% of which are from the most impoverished families.
The MasterPeace team is directly addressing the need of women and adolescent girls to have access to hygienic, cost-effective, eco-disposable sanitary napkins (SNAPS) through a Sanitary Napkin Production Social Entrepreneurship Project. The SNAPS are produced by women Self Help Groups with the aim to improve reproductive health and generate a sustainable income to end poverty and hunger in 25 villages.
The project has directly impacted approximately 5000 women/adolescent girls with around 50,000 pieces of SNAPs already produced and distributed to these villages. A Sanitary Napkin vending machine was even installed in a Girls high school, giving them easy access!
12 Reproductive Health Camps were organized in villages and schools, improving the understanding of health & hygiene issues and providing treatment for Reproductive Tract Infection (RTI) and Sexual Transmitted Diseases (STDs).
Through the Sanitary Napkin Project, MasterPeace is working towards better employment for women, increased rate of adolescent girls staying in school, and decreased overall health risks. MasterPeace India continues to pave the way for the improvement of women’s health and standard of living in India.