Restoring the Girl’s Dignity in Masunga

Restoring the Girl’s Dignity in Masunga

Today we notice the importance of interacting with the girl child more and more in our lives because this interaction will help us learn their needs and also get to know the challenges they face on a daily basis, especially in understanding issues surrounding womanhood and how they face the world with dignity and high self-esteem.

One of these issues that are close to our attention is menstruation and the challenge that comes with it. Our staff has spent a lot time working on this issue and what it means to the rights of the girl child in Botswana. What we learned was very saddening. We almost never talk about it, yet menstrual cycle is universal. It’s one of the things that really makes women uniquely female. The truth is that we never really consider the challenges of menstruation for the girl child beyond individual experiences.

Challenges like: self-esteem, personality growth, embarrassment, missing of classes in fear of being bullied and many other encounters that we may be fearful of facing.

In some parts of our country for example we have learned of cases where girls use their school scarfs as sanitary towels, others use toilet paper. According to UNESCO one in ten girls drop out of school because of this lack of access and education surrounding menstrual circle.

Given all the chaos in the world today, it is especially disheartening that beautiful and talented girls are forced to forfeit their education simply due to lack of menstrual supplies. This is a solvable problem that has the potential to provide dramatic social and economic benefits.

We are sharing this because we want all the girls to know that menstrual circle is natural and it is universal. Most importantly, we must not be embarrassed, or ripped off our dignity because of this.

Today the Mascom staff takes a step in giving woman dignity through our Sanitary Pad Drive campaign, an important step in helping cause a paradigm shift for our girl child.

Setswana sa re “Mabogo Dinku a Thebana”. It’s through our Mascom 20th Celebrations milestone, we chose the initiative of contributing sanitary pads because:

  1. We need girls like you to know that you are master pieces, created in God’s image: That a girl in need of sanitary pads and other toiletries is DIGNIFIED. And we wanted to tap and shine some light on that DIGNITY, so that you can appreciate yourselves more.
  2. We aim to RAISE HEALTHY WOMEN; because lack of sanitary pads can lead to using unhygienic items that can affect your health.
  3. We hope that this contribution will come as a form of EMPOWERMENT to you as a girl child:
    1. To help improve your interactions with your peers in school; and that you won’t have to be tense during menstrual circles thinking you would have stained your uniform or otherwise.
    2. To help Improve your confidence that is highly needed as you grow up; when one doesn’t have needed resources, their self-esteem is very much impacted.
    3. We also hope this effort will reduce vulnerability; because one won’t have to rely on people who usually take advantage of people who are in need. (When you have needs that are not met, in most instances you may resort to engaging in things that have very bad outcomes).
    4. We hope this opportunity will reduce missed school days, thereby leading to improved marks.

Our final words to the girl child is:

  1. Learn to find the Positives in every situation; it helps one to stay focused on the target. You are a student, the main target is to pass your exams and build a future with limited regrets.
  1. Build positive relationships; consider who you relate with, why that particular person, what do they bring in your life.

Number 1 Because You

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