Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Absa Bank Uganda and AFRIpads have handed over more than 1,200 reusable sanitary pad kits to school girls from Mukono High School to empower them to remain in school.
The donation is in response to the need for quality and consistent menstrual products that enable school girls to attend and remain active in school with confidence.
The adolescent girls at Mukono High School will each receive a schoolgirl kit, consisting of 5 reusable sanitary pads and 2 carrying pouches. When cared for properly, the washable sanitary pads can be used for over 12 months, removing the stress of constantly needing more disposable products throughout the year.
While speaking about the donation during the ceremony held at the school, Helen Nangonzi Basuuta – Absa Bank Uganda’s Marketing and Customer Experience Director, said, “Recognising just how many girls miss out on the opportunity to acquire an education because they lack access to proper menstrual hygiene is one of life’s greatest tragedies, and this is why we stepped forward to provide some tangible support towards this noble cause.”
The donation is part of UGX 200 million that was raised from the inaugural Absa KH3 7 Hills Run, which was held on 28 May 2023 in partnership with the Kampala Hash House Harriers and saw over 2,500 runners tackle 21km across the seven iconic hills in Kampala to help keep the girl-child in school.
Every year, nearly two million children begin primary school, but less than half and only slightly more than a quarter of this number in some cases complete primary seven. According to UNICEF’s Uganda Annual Report for 2021, one of the reasons for Uganda’s high drop-out rates is the matter of menstrual health, with the onset of puberty contributing to many girls stopping going to school.
Joris Boon – CEO of AFRIpads said, “Helping to keep girls in school and setting them up for success to complete their education has a direct positive effect on Ugandan society. At AFRIpads, we value education and partnerships, such as this with Absa Bank Uganda, to help provide quality and critical menstrual products to school girls across the country.”
AFRIpads is the world’s leading social enterprise manufacturing reusable sanitary pads and in addition to the donation, they will conduct training on menstrual hygiene for the girls on how to take best care of the products and themselves during their monthly cycles, while Absa staff will offer career guidance.
Absa’s Nangonzi added, “As an organisation, we believe in the power of education to provide access to opportunities for advancement for individuals and promote a just society, and these are part of our key contributions to Uganda as part of our commitment to empowering Africa’s tomorrow together one story at a time.”