Peace Corps Cloth Pad Project Update

Peace Corps Cloth Pad Project Update

In May 2011 Pads4Girls was contacted by Helen McGuirk, a Peace Corps volunteer working in Nyanza Province, Kenya. Helen was collecting funds to start a Cloth Pad Program to teach students how to sew their own reusable menstrual pads. Pads4Girls donated the remaining funds needed for Helen to get her project off the ground. Here's the latest update on her progress and the amazing ripple-effect the program is having.

Hello readers! It's time for an update from Western Kenya, where girls are learning how to make their own menstrual pads (thanks to Lunapads) with locally available materials. The school term was short this year, so we were working extra hard to prepare and meet the students. From September through November, two secondary schools and four primary schools were visited, and a total of 368 girls were taught how to make their own washable cloth pads.

These past few months were especially amazing for me as a Peace Corps Volunteer. There was so much support for our program - so much more than I was expecting. Most teachers I met were very eager to learn how to sew the pads too, and usually by my second visit to the schools, the teachers were the ones arranging and making sure the students were doing everything correctly.

At the girls leadership camp we conducted this summer, we chose two girls from my area to learn tactics for good decision making and the confidence to grow as a strong woman in this world. During the past term these same girls volunteered to come with me (after school) and teach others at different schools how to make the pads. I was so proud.

With all the work we've done and all the knowledge we've created we're not even close to being done. We have about ten more schools to visit next term (starting in January) so wish us all luck!

Thanks, and happy holidays!

Helen McGuirk
Public Health Volunteer, US Peace Corps
Mikai, Kenya 2010-2012


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