#PeriodPaath : Let’s Start A Conversation About Menstruation

Editor’s Note: This post is an entry for the #Periodपाठ writing contest, a unique opportunity for you to write a letter and stand a chance of winning up to ₹30,000! The contest is organised by Youth Ki Awaaz in collaboration with WSSCC. Find out more here and submit your entry!

To,
Aruna Chaudhary,
Minister of Social Security, Women and Child Development,
Punjab.
Subject:- Menstruation and Menstrual Hygine.
Respected ma’am,
Menstruation is a natural physiological process that almost every woman undergoes. At this time, a woman needs to pay special attention to personal hygine because poor menstrual hygine can lead to many health problems. But everyone is not aware that what they should do and what they should not do during periods. There are many restrictions on girls and women during menstruation because of some myths. For example, at many places, there are restrictions on their entering into the kitchen and temple because they are considered impure at this time. I have read in an article that in Nepal, menstruating women have to live away from their house. They have to live alone in a shed. It may cause danger to their lives such as they may be bitten by snakes and in winter, it is very difficult to survive in a shed. By giving people correct information about menstruation, we can get rid of these taboos.
Many girls are not aware about menstruation before their first period. So, when their first period starts, they become anxious. The girls should be educated about it from the early age. A girl should be told about it before her first period. It should be added into education curriculum that how to use sanitary pads, how to dispose them and which nutrients should be available in the girls’ food at this time. Girls face many problems during periods because boys and men are unaware about menstruation. So, boys and men should be educated about it. It will lead to more open conversations about menstruation. It will also help boys and men to understand the girls’ and women’s needs during this time. Even some elderly ladies are also not aware about it. Elderly ladies in the family such as grandmothers should also be told about menstruation and menstrual hygine. If they have information about it, they can make the girls understand better about menstrual hygine. During menstruation, some girls and women use same cloth again and again after washing because they cannot afford sanitary pads. Sanitary pads should be made affordable so that every girl and woman can use it. Girls and women should also be given knowledge about the right disposal methods of sanitary pads because the wrong disposal methods can lead to environment pollution. Incineration is a good method for the disposal of sanitary pads. For good menstrual hygine, clean toilets should be available in education institutions, at workplaces, at public places and at home. There should be adequate supply of water. The soap or sanitiser should be available there. Dustbins should be emptied occasionally so that the toilets should be keep clean. The information about menstrual hygine should be given through workshops, through kindergarten workers, through radio, tv and social media.
I hope you will pay attention to the matter.
Sincerely,
Kuldeep Kaur.

Similar Posts

A former Assistant Secretary with the Ministry of Women and Child Development in West Bengal for three months, Lakshmi Bhavya has been championing the cause of menstrual hygiene in her district. By associating herself with the Lalana Campaign, a holistic menstrual hygiene awareness campaign which is conducted by the Anahat NGO, Lakshmi has been slowly breaking taboos when it comes to periods and menstrual hygiene.

A Gender Rights Activist working with the tribal and marginalized communities in india, Srilekha is a PhD scholar working on understanding body and sexuality among tribal girls, to fill the gaps in research around indigenous women and their stories. Srilekha has worked extensively at the grassroots level with community based organisations, through several advocacy initiatives around Gender, Mental Health, Menstrual Hygiene and Sexual and Reproductive Health Rights (SRHR) for the indigenous in Jharkhand, over the last 6 years.

Srilekha has also contributed to sustainable livelihood projects and legal aid programs for survivors of sex trafficking. She has been conducting research based programs on maternal health, mental health, gender based violence, sex and sexuality. Her interest lies in conducting workshops for young people on life skills, feminism, gender and sexuality, trauma, resilience and interpersonal relationships.

A Guwahati-based college student pursuing her Masters in Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Bidisha started the #BleedwithDignity campaign on the technology platform Change.org, demanding that the Government of Assam install
biodegradable sanitary pad vending machines in all government schools across the state. Her petition on Change.org has already gathered support from over 90000 people and continues to grow.

Bidisha was selected in Change.org’s flagship program ‘She Creates Change’ having run successful online advocacy
campaigns, which were widely recognised. Through the #BleedwithDignity campaign; she organised and celebrated World Menstrual Hygiene Day, 2019 in Guwahati, Assam by hosting a wall mural by collaborating with local organisations. The initiative was widely covered by national and local media, and the mural was later inaugurated by the event’s chief guest Commissioner of Guwahati Municipal Corporation (GMC) Debeswar Malakar, IAS.

Sign up for the Youth Ki Awaaz Prime Ministerial Brief below