In many cultures menstruation treated as something negative, shameful or dirty. A study from UNICEF revealed that 1 out of 3 girls in South Asia knew nothing about menstruation before getting it. Women and girls’ capacity to manage their periods is affected by a number of factors, including limited access to affordable and hygienic sanitary materials and disposal options leaving many to manage their periods in ineffective, uncomfortable and unhygienic ways. These problems are further exacerbated by insufficient access to safe and private toilets and lack of clean water and soap for personal hygiene. As a result, menstruating girls and women often feel ashamed and embarrassed.
SPACE considers menstrual hygiene management as a key issue of reproductive health and consequently ensures WASH facilities for women and girls under different project areas. During the reporting period, SPACE facilitated in installing 218 latrines at households and 3 latrines at school having menstrual hygiene facilities. In consequent, 1081 women and 970 girls are now getting access to latrine facilities and manage their periods hygienically. To increase awareness regarding reproductive health and menstrual hygiene, SPACE conducted and organized different awareness raising programs both at school and community level. Besides, 22 women bathing chamber having menstrual hygiene facilities installed during the reporting period where a total of 661 women have access to safe bathing facilities and can manage their period properly.
Field data further reveals that about90% HHs received message on menstrual hygiene but at practice level the percentage is not very satisfactory, only 23%; this is mainly because of poor economic condition, limited access to affordable and hygienic sanitary materials and disposal options and persisting taboos.