This project aims at keeping girls in school by proving sanitary towels to vulnerable girls in schools and equipping them with knowledge on how to handle their bodies. With a purpose to make local young girls more aware about their body changes and relevant topics during the provision of sanitary towels, LOHYI International organizes sessions to train them about Health and Personal Hygiene. Elimisha Dada’s strategy is not to duplicate the work of teachers in schools, but it strives to compliment it, our aim is to mentor the young generation on education and societal issues:
Background Information of” Elimisha Dada”Program.
Elimisha Dada works as a package that observes the principle of inclusivity in all aspects of national development, where it fills the gaps that exist in our society through Education, Transformation, Mentorship and nurturing the young generation to be active citizens for a better future.
As aforementioned, Light of Hope supports several schools in the Machakos county and surroundings by providing more than 4000 girls with sanitary pads on a monthly basis. The distribution of sanitary pads is accompanied by educational talks to girls in classes 6, 7 and 8 and students from forms 1-4 on issues such as HIV/AIDS, drug abuse, nutrition, health, hygiene and sanitation. We recognize lack of knowledge and services around these matters which can lead to driving factors in early marriage, pregnancy, HIV transmissions and school drop-outs. The program responds to the reality that many girls do not attend school during their menstruation cycle. Some young girls are forced to stay at home the whole week because their families do not have the necessary funds to purchase sanitary pads. In Kenya, 850,000 girls miss 6 weeks of school every year because of their periods.
Following Light of Hope’s 2014 survey across the first 6 schools they visited in Machakos, it was found that on average 65% of girls missed a week from school per term due to their periods. This amounts to 203 out of 332 girls missing school. The lack of attendance affects their academic performance as many girls cannot reach the best of their ability. Monthly disruptions because of menstruation is also a contributing factor to higher school drop-out rates amongst girls in Kenya – 24% of girls do not complete their primary school education.
These findings encouraged the creation of the Elimisha Dada, ‘Educate your Sister’. It gives focus and attention to promoting the education of girls in Kenya into positive life opportunities. The initiative targets reach of 10,000 girls by 2020.From recent case studies collected, we have found that many girls have their first period at school and are sent home from their teachers because the teachers cannot provide them with a sanitary pad to allow them to continue their classes for the rest of the day.
LOHYI International is permanently run by local/staff volunteers and International volunteers from organisations such as VSO (Voluntary Service Overseas, Volunteer world and Omprakash org).
LOHYI International empowers young people and women to become key players in their own community, allowing them to encourage their own grass roots level development. The aim of the organisation is to enable the participation, engagement and inclusion of the most vulnerable and marginalised adolescent, youth and young women in society through numerous community based projects. These projects include the current main focus of the organisation: Elimisha Dada.
What can you do?
Through your donations (monetary of sanitary towels) we can help to keep as many girls in school as possible.