Rotary supports girl child, distributes reusable sanitary pads to over 400 female students in Abia

Rotary supports girl child, distributes reusable sanitary pads to over 400 female students in Abia

One of the largest service organizations in the world that is non-political, non-religious, whose mission is to provide service to others, promote integrity, and advance world understanding, goodwill, and peace through the fellowship of business, professional, and community leaders – Rotary International has launched a PAD A GIRL project to sensitize schoolgirls on the importance of menstrual hygiene and support to the girl child.

The Rotary Club of Umudike Central, District 9142, Nigeria in collaboration with North Cobb Rotary Club, District 6900, USA, which visited six (6) schools in Ikwuano/Umuahia Federal constituency, in Abia State, also distributed reusable sanitary pads to more than 400 female secondary school students.

Schools that benefitted include: Community Secondary School, Ihim Ibere, Methodist High School, Oboro , Michael Okpara University Demonstration Secondary School Umudike in Ikwuano L.G.A and Ndume-Otuka Community Secondary School. Others are Ohuhu Community Secondary School, Amaogwugwu in Umuahia North L.G.A; and Umuopara secondary school in Umuahia South L.G.A.

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Speaking during the “Pad A Girl”, project, the President of Rotary Club of Umudike Central, Rotarian Seline Ilochi described the project as the Clubs’journey towards empowering young girls with sustainable menstrual health solutions.

She pointed out that the choice of reusable pads does not only lie in its ability to ensure safe menstrual hygiene practice, but also in its environmentally friendly nature, which significantly reduces waste associated with disposable pads, which harm the environment.

She disclosed that the aim of the project was to ensure that the girls have unhindered access to quality education no matter the period they are in particularly during the monthly flow.

Rotarian Ilochi, who pointed out that menstruation is a natural phenomenon that must be handled with the utmost care, said Reusable pads are very economical because you can use it over and over again, provided you keep it clean, up till three years.

Addressing the female students respectively in their various schools, the Rotary Club of Umudike Central’s Public Image Chair, Rotarian Onyinye Ralph-Nwachukwu, said that the project will also help the girls to know how to take care of themselves and maintain a good menstrual hygiene.

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Rotarian Onyinye Ralph-Nwachukwu, who is also Rotary International Past Assistant Governor advised the students to gently wash the reusable pads with water after six (6) hours of use and sun dry them, in order not to create a room for bacteria to penetrate and cause a harm to their bodies.

She said that the Rotary Club of Umudike Central, District 9142 and North Cobb Rotary Club, District 6900, USA have been promoting reusable sanitary pads.

She advised young girls not to feel shy or isolate themselves during their monthly period, asserting that girls having their monthly menstrual flow is not a taboo but a healthy lifestyle.

Rotarian Onyinye Ralph-Nwachukwu who espoused the various works of Rotarians, Rotaractors and Interactors encouraged the young girls to join the Interact Club in order to serve their communities and humanity with their time and talents.

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Past Assistant Governors, Njoku Uche Njoku and Obuora Okoye , Assistant Governor Vince Asor as well as ,Past President Chinonyerem Obinwa took the students on a practical steps on how to use the reusable pads.

It would be recalled that this project is the second time the two partnering Clubs have run this exercise for young girls. The first was during the 2022-23 Rotary year and second, during the current 2023-24 Rotary year of service.