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Busia County to host World Menstrual Hygiene Day

Busia County will host the National event for the World Menstrual Hygiene Day (MHD) set for 30th May, 2023.

The event which will be held at the Busia Vocational Training Centre in Matayos Sub County will mark the day which is commemorated on the 28th of May annually.

The Menstrual Health Steering Committee led by the coordinator Edwin Odhiambo said preparations are in top gear to ensure that the celebration which will also be attended by high profile leaders from across the country is successful.

“We have made a rallying call that everybody should talk about this openly and allow our women and girls to menstruate with dignity and without shame or fear. Lack of information has made girls to engage in unhealthy activities that have destroyed their future,” he said.

Speaking at a hotel in Busia town, Odhiambo emphasized that the Busia County Department of Health and Sanitation is committed to ensuring that there are policies that support menstrual hygiene management activities within the County.

Odhiambo however expressed concern that the disposal of menstrual waste has remained a big challenge due to stigma attached to it, a situation he said has made some landlords to profile girls and women within the age bracket of menstruation in fear that their latrines will be filled quickly.

The USAID Western Kenya Sanitation Project, Menstrual Hygiene Management (MHM) Lead Officer Neville Okwaro said they are keen on the MHD which targets to ensure that menstruation is a normal fact of life.

“This particular day is so important because we want to raise a profile that this is a natural biological function of the body; we want to make this a collective responsibility including businesses stocking and distributing the sanitary products to move them to the consumers. Our goal is to get to a point where no girl or a woman is going to decide on whether to buy food or menstrual management materials,” added Okwaro.

Busia County Public Health Officer, Joseph Oprong encouraged men to be role models by participating in menstrual hygiene management, adding that they should ensure they buy sanitary pads for their girls and wives to prevent cases of being misused by other people.

He continued, “Despite challenges experienced in the County we have brought on board people from different sectors to break the silence on issues of menstruation,”

The Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) including Child Africa and Days for Girls stressed that as champions of MHM, they will not relent in addressing issues of early marriages, sex for pads and school dropout.

By Salome Alwanda

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