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Dauda deborah 5-8-14

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Bixby Lecture
May 8, 2014
Our Girls Matter: Menstrual Hygiene Management in Nigeria, Education and Male Participation.
Deborah Dauda

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Dauda deborah 5-8-14

  1. 1. + Our Girls Matter: Menstrual Hygiene Management in Nigeria, Education and Male Participation. Deborah Dauda for Leading Everyone to Participate in Africa (LEPA) Initiative
  2. 2. + Outline  Why Does it Matter? Why Now?  Definition of Key Terms  Menstrual Hygiene Management in Nigeria  Taboos  Practices  Absenteeism related to menstruation  Possible Solutions- Building Allies  The role of men/fathers  Current project –LEPA (Leading Everyone to Participate in Africa)- MHM Curriculum for Adolescent girls in Nigeria.  QUESTIONS!
  3. 3. + What Is Menstrual Hygiene Management (MHM)?
  4. 4. + It Means……  Women and adolescents are using a clean, and readily available menstrual management material ( i.e. reusable/disposable pads, menstrual cups, and tampons) to absorb or collect blood for the entire duration of their cycle.  Ensuring adequate water, cleaning and washing materials (soap, water, etc..)are available and accessible, without risk. AND  Private spaces for managing menstrual flows, safely, hygienically and with dignity, in the home and in public spaces are available, and without risks.
  5. 5. +Why Does it Matter?  On any day 300 million women and girls worldwide will be menstruating (George, 2013).  In Nigeria, between 31% and 56 % of girls use toilet tissue paper as an absorbent (Torondel, 2013).  In Ethiopia, 90% of the schools lack water supply, separate toilet for boys and girls and the existing toilets lack privacy (Tsegaye, et.al, 2011).  In Malawi menstruating girls had to bathe separately to parents and stop talking to boys ( Prestwich, 2013)
  6. 6. + Why Now?  Menstrual hygiene management is a human rights issue but has been put on the backburner for far too long, and excluded in programming related to SRHR of young people.  As Gloria Steinem eloquently puts it: “If men could menstruate...menstruation would be an enviable, boast-worthy,masculine event: Men would brag about how long and how much.Boys would mark the onset of menses,that longed-for proof of manhood,with religious ritual and stage parties.Congress would fund a National Institute of Dysmenorrhea to help stamp out monthly discomforts.Sanitary supplies would be federally funded and free.”
  7. 7. + Breaking Down Taboos Source: Celebrating Womanhood: How Better Menstrual Hygiene Management is the Path to Better Health, Dignity and Business by Rose George for WSSCRC
  8. 8. + Men:What Activities DoYou Feel Women Should Abstain from While Menstruating. RESPONSES PLEASE!
  9. 9. + Women:What Would/Wouldn't You Do While Menstruating? RESPONSE PLEASE!
  10. 10. + What About in Nigeria’s Context??  Taboo/Stigma  Compulsory Abstinence:“Our husbands don’t look at us...They only give us five days free from sex” (House et.al, 2012)  Religious Restriction:The Celestial Churches in Nigeria believe a woman/girl should not touch any juju (charm) during menstruation or it will become ineffective (House et.al, 2012)  Exclusion/Alienation: Menstruating women and girls are forced into seclusion, suffer reduced mobility and dietary restrictions, and can be prevented, through cultural norms, from participating in daily activities.  More Examples from Audience!
  11. 11. + How Does Taboo/Stigma Affect MHM Practices ? The culture of silence surrounding Mensuration increases the vulnerability of girls, and can lead to unhygienic menstrual practice, isolation, low self-esteem, and violence/abuse.  A Study conducted by water Aid, found that 95% of girls in rural Ghana felt embarrassed during their last period and 90% said they felt ashamed (Betteridge, 2013)  In Malawi, 82% did not know about menstruation before the onset of menarche and Girls were also excluded from water sources during menstruation and prohibited from cooking or bathing in some communities (Betteridge, 2013)
  12. 12. + Meanwhile, In Nigeria……  Survey of 495 post menarche Nigerian schoolgirls discovered that 44.8% of girls had no preparation for menarche.  Only 8.8% of the girls had received training from aid workers or teachers.  More than half of the girls surveyed described the experience of menarche as frightful or confusing.  In Nigeria, the national toilet-to-pupil ratio is one latrine to 292 students. And even the ones available are run-down and lack privacy and washing stations/supplies. Source:WaterAid.org, Anibue, 2009
  13. 13. +Continued.. Source: House et. al, 2012
  14. 14. + School Absenteeism and Menstruation. “Menstrual hygiene has always been shrouded in secrecy for me and I believe it is fair to say that I speak for most of the world’s male population.It had never occurred to me that women and girls 'never wear white' when they have their period.As it will never have occurred to the thousands and thousands of headmasters of schools over the world that burden girls with light colored uniform dresses.” -Rolf Luyendijk, UNICEF
  15. 15. + What Issues/Concerns Might Prevent a Girl from Attending School While on Her Period? Source: Keep Girls in School Period
  16. 16. +Why Are Men/fathers Critical In Reducing Stigma and Promoting Positive MHM?  As Head of Household, decision making power- Money for sanitary supplies- thus preventing the exposure of young girls to risk involving the exchange of sex for money  Can be empowering to young girls- Having fathers, involved and understanding of their growth/development.  Reduces the burden on women/mothers.  Men/fathers can sensitize boys and involve them in debunking myths and reducing stigma associated with menstruation.  Could have intergenerational benefits, mitigate child marriage- i.e. If fathers understands that menstruation doesn’t mean daughter is physiologically prepared for motherhood.  AUDIENCE, MORE EXAMPLES PLEASE !!!!
  17. 17. +Why Do Some Men Cringe/ Reluctant/Uncomfortable Discussing Menstruation? Source: House et.al, 2012
  18. 18. + Being Politically Correct (The Power in Words)….. [Menstruation] is not a sexy issue. Politicians don't like it. Women too have a certain hesitation.We need to get old women on board,and old men. In Sierra Leone, [a] girl wanted to use tampons so she could go swimming,her grandmother said she wouldn't have tampons in her house.” Varina Tjon A Ten, former Dutch parliamentarian,The Hague University
  19. 19. + Making “Uncomfortable”Words ‘Politically Correct’. Audience Get Up and Get the Following Words out of your system : Menstruation Vagina
  20. 20. + WillYou Take The Pledge and Help Break the Silence? Pledge for Girls/Women and Boys/Men: I will break the silence on menstruation I will not feel shy; I will take pride I will spread the word outside and inside the home Source:Water Supply Sanitation and Collaborative Council (WSSCC)
  21. 21. + Current Project LEPA (Leading Everyone to Participate in Africa) Initiative Mission:To empower, inspire, mentor and build the leadership capacity of African and Diasporan Youth. Three overarching Plan-of-Action: 1. The realization of the rights of girls, 2. The active participation of African youths in all levels of civil society, 3. And the building of stronger relationships between Africans in the Diaspora and those on the continent.
  22. 22. + Continued…  The development of a MHM curriculum for Nigerian School girls is part of the First Plan of Action (The Realization of the Rights of Girls).  Needs Assessment Survey is under revision  Mentorship Support from The Red Elephant Foundation (India)  Grants!! Funding, etc..
  23. 23. + Sources  Aniebue,U. U., Aniebue,P. N., & Nwankwo,T. O. (2009). The Impact of Pre-Menarcheal Training on Menstrual Practices and Hygiene of Nigerian School Girls. Pan African Medical Journal ,2 (9), 2-9.  Betteridge, A. (2013). WhyWe Need to Talk About Periods: Menstrual Hygiene Management in Development Practice. The Development Policy Center, DevPolicy Blog. Development Policy Center.  George, R. (2013). CelebratingWomanhood:Menstrual Hygiene Management . Water Supply & Sanitation Collaborative Council (WSSCC). Geneva:Water Supply & Sanitation Collaborative Council (WSSCC).  Georgina, P. (2013). An Exploratory Study into Menstrual Hygiene Management Amongst Rural,Primary Schoolgirls in Uganda:What Implications does Menstrual Related Absenteeism have for Future Interventions? . Irise.  House,S., Mahon,T., & Cavill, S. (2012). Menstrual Hygiene Matters A Resource for Improving Menstrual Hygiene Around theWorld. WaterAid.org.WaterAid.  Onyilo, G., Onabolu, B., Mohammed, F., & Gege, A. The Nigerian Girls Education Project:Giving The Girl Child aVoice.  Sumpter, C., & Torondel, B. (2013). A Systematic Review of the Health and Social Effects of Menstrual Hygiene Management . PLoS ONE ,8 (4), 1-15.  Tsegaye,Z.,Tamiru, S., Kitaba, A., & Getachew, F. (2011). Towards a Local Solution for Menstrual Hygiene Management in Schools.WASH. SNV Netherlands Development Organisation .
  24. 24. + Questions/Comments? Email: Lepa86@gmail.com Twitter: @YeyeLepa “ThankYou” “Asante Sana” “Ese Pupo” “Obrigada” “Gracias” “Merci”

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