By Gabriel Udeh Kaduna
Center for Media Advocacy for Mother and Child (CAMAC), has donated “Menstrual Emergency Kits” to Braintrust College, Kurmin Mashi, Kaduna, as part of her “Period Friendly” facility campaign for public places in Nigeria.
CAMAC made the donation on Thursday, at a sensitization campaign to mark the Global World Toilet Day which is commemorated every 19th November, with the theme: “sustainable sanitation and climate change”.
Menstrual emergency kits box are menstrual period kits box that provides everything women of menstrual age need to go with the flow, even if it happens at public places such as school, work, market, motor park, worship centre, the gym, etc. While stressing that period friendly facility are those facilities where women are comfortable to use during their monthly menstrual period, items donated by CAMAC include Menstrual Emergency Box, Sanitary Pads, Painkiller Drugs, Waste Bin, Detergents and Disinfectants. CAMAC, had launched the campaign on 15th October, at Kantin Kwari Market and Motor Park in Kaduna, where it also donated some hand washing materials such as soaps, bucket, dustbin, detergent and disinfectant for the use of travelling and market women and girls.
CAMAC is a media advocacy group that focus on advocating for policies and programmes that favour vulnerable women, adolescent girls and children in areas of education, health, child’s rights, protection, development and survival, while also drawing the attention of government and other stakeholders to their plight, with the view to finding lasting solutions to their problem. “It as well create awareness and sensitises the public on the above areas”, he stated..
Addressing female students and management of the college, Executive Director of CAMAC, Alex Uangbaoje noted that women and young girls can only be comfortable in public places during their monthly menstrual period if the facilities are suitable for use and the required sanitary materials are available.
He emphasized on the need for both government and private school owners not to only build toilets, but to also make them “PERIOD friendly” for the sake of the girls.
Mr Alex urged the girls to always ensure it maintained personal hygiene before, during and after their menstrual period.
“We are here today to first and foremost; sensitize you on the importance of your menstrual hygiene, and secondly on how to maintain a good and hygiene friendly environment especially toilet favourable to your healthy living.
“As young girls, always ensure you don’t use unclean items as pad during your menstrual period where sanitary pads are not available, instead use clean items and dispose them properly to avoid infectious diseases.
“You need to wash and keep your toilets clean because of the sensitivity of your bodies, most importantly use disinfectant, especially public toilets. And don’t do open defecation otherwise, you will be causing pollution to your environment and it’s unhygienic for young girls like you.
“So as CAMAC, we are here to help you understand how important it is to keep your personal and menstrual hygiene and your environment and health will be come better.” He said.
The ED, who was represented by the Program Officer, Christie Alex, admonished the girls to become advocates for cleanliness and hygiene in their school.
Responding, on behalf of the students, Asmahu Abdulahi, who is the Health Prefect in the school, complained that the toilets in the school are in bad shape as such students prefer to us open defecation.
She called on the school management to henceforth do something about the situation because the sensitization has open their eyes to now discover that the students are in real danger.
The guidance and Counselling Officer of the College, Mrs Ezekiel Joy, who appreciated CAMAC for selecting the in the midst of numerous schools in the state, after receiving the items, pledged the College’s commitment to ensuring the Emergency Kits Box is maintained and the toilet facility are upgraded to be more period friendly.
She said though the college would have done the upgrade long ago, but there were other challenges that has hindered it which would soon be addressed.
The Principal Mr Godwin Ogar, on his part confirmed the position of Asmau, that the toilets are in bad shape, but however blame that reason on the students who most times leave them unkept.
“Due to different background and upbringing of some of the students, who mostly are used to the pit toilets and open defecation they prefer the unusual method, by using stones instead of water to the extent that some female students put sanitary pads inside the toilet as a method of disposing them and that is causing the school a lot of money to maintain the toilet.
“But thank you for your concern and the sensitization, we are hopeful that going forward they will be doing the right things.” Mr Ogar, added.
He commended CAMAC for the gesture, promising that, he will make sure the students abide by what they are taught.
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