Girl’s Room

A private, safe and clean place in school

In Africa, half of the schools do not have any washrooms and those that do have, do not have separate toilets for girls and boys. Many girls do not go to school because of this.

During menstruation, one in ten girls don’t go to school, so they stay at home alone. And one in five girls can’t afford sanitary pads, so they use unsanitary alternatives such as cloth and straw.

With a basic hygienic sanitary environment, the lives of African girls would be very different.

A Girl’s Room is a private, safe and clean place in a school which supports girls during their menstruation.

Real stories from girls in Rwanda

Safe, clean bathroom for girls only

“Our school did not have a private place for girls to use safely and cleanly during menstruation.

So most of the girls didn’t come to school during that time.

And I can’t escape to talk about things with my friends in the washroom.

In our school, boys and girls share the same washroom, so it’s embarrassing every time we meet boys, especially when we go to replace sanitary pads.

But soon we will have a room for us!

A bathroom where girls can freely use the toilet, change sanitary pads and wash their hands.

It’s not uncomfortable to go to the bathroom anymore.”

Christine, 15years old, Rwanda

I am not afraid of menstruation anymore

“It was so difficult during my period.

In my village we have a culture that denies menstruation, so when I go outside during the period, I am very anxious about people looking at me. So I mostly stayed in the house during my period and missed going to school.

When my menstruation started, my mother gave me old clothes, cloth and straw to use as sanitary pads. I know it’s not good for my body, but we have no choice, we cannot afford to buy sanitary pads.

Now I am supported. I can get disposable sanitary pads, soap, toilet paper and towels in the Girl`s Room.  And I can go to class to learn how to make and use cotton sanitary pads.

I am not afraid of menstruation anymore.”

Solange, 15years old, Rwanda

I no longer need to miss school

“This happened in the classroom a while ago.

During break, a friend came up to me and said in a small voice, “You got blood on your skirt”.

I was ashamed and embarrassed and didn’t want to see my other friends.

I asked my teacher for help and got a temporary uniform from the Girls’ Room to change into.

I could back to class again.

Phew … If I went home, I wouldn’t feel well and couldn’t keep up with my school work.

It’s great to have a place where you can always get help!”

Leonsia, 15years old, Rwanda

Helping girls stay safe and healthy and enabling them to carry on studying

We provide health care programmes to:

•  Construct girl-friendly spaces ‘Girl’s Rooms’ in schools, building separate toilets for boys and girls

•  Provide hygiene kits including sanitary pads, toilet paper, soap and towels for girls to use

•  Offer emotional support for children

•  Guide teachers and students with health hygiene education

•  Run Community Awareness campaigns on girl’s rights, health hygiene and gender equality

Support us today to gift a private, safe and clean place in school

Donate

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