Arewa Youth Trust Foundation, on Sunday in Katanga community, Sabon Gari Local Government area of Kaduna State, sensitised women on menstrual hygiene and distributed sanitary pads.
During the exercise, the Team Leader of the foundation, Fahad Chikaji, emphasised the importance of using sanitary pads during menstruation, saying it could help the women have their menstrual period with dignity.
“If not properly managed, menstruation can interrupt a woman’s daily activities,” he said, explaining that “this development sparked the distribution of sanitary pads to over 50 women in Katanga village.”
According to him, adolescents usually experience extreme painful periods which could affect their daily life performance .
He added that the lack of adequate materials, restrictions of girls movements during their period and feeling ashamed or ‘unclean’ also contributed to girls inability to practice proper sanitary hygiene.
Chikaji further stressed that it is pertinent to inculcate the habit of environmental hygiene apart from personal hygiene because most of the health-related issues are caused by pathogens that breed under unhygienic environmental conditions.
“Most women living in rural areas don’t have the habit of personal and environmental hygiene. We have experienced instances whereby women only clean up when it’s their cooking days in a polygamous family which is bad for the health.
“Some of the rural women also take their baths only when it’s their turn with their husbands in a polygamous setting. This is unhygienic,” he said, urging women to make bathing a daily routine.
“Let us all endeavour to make our surroundings, ranging from the kitchen, toilet, living areas clean at all times for a healthy society free from all impurities,” Chikaji said.
He urged women and Nigerians at large to adhere to the Covid-19 protocols as prescribed by the Government to help curb the spread of the killer disease.
Also speaking during the sensitization programme, Hajiya Aisha Salahudeen, the foundation’s Women and Youth Mobilization Officer, laid more emphasis on the importance of using sanitary pads, the science behind it and how it could help in preventing common diseases.
She urged the elders and parents in the community to take stringent measures within the law towards preventing their children from rape, sexual assaults and other social vices.
Usman Isah-Babajo, the foundation’s communications manager, admonished the males in the community on the importance of supporting their wives and girls by providing them with sanitary pads during menstruation periods.
“If you support your wives and daughters during their ‘menses’ with pads and other sanitary items, you will be satisfied that you have at least supported them on a healthy practice which will translate into a healthy home and family,” he said.
Aisha Suleiman, a parent and one of the beneficiaries, said she was overwhelmed with happiness about the sensitization programme, especially the aspect on personal hygiene.
“I have learnt how to use the sanitary pads instead of ordinary clothes which I have been using for ages and most importantly, I learnt so much about sexual harassment.
“I am happy our daughters are being taught to have the courage to say yes or no, I thank the foundation for bringing such a programme down to the grassroots,” Suleiman said.
Another beneficiary, Khadija Sani, an adolescent, said she had never seen or heard of sanitary pads.
“This is the first time in my life hearing of or seeing the sanitary pad, I am happy to know how to use it because it seems it is going make me feel free and comfortable while using it,” she said.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that following the Katanga sensitisation experience, women from neighbouring communities have urged the foundation to bring such a programme to them.
Edited By: Vincent Obi