Stakeholders in the education sector have come together to work out strategies to help bridge the challenges of poor menstrual hygiene in schools in the country.
As part of efforts to help solve the problem of poor menstrual hygiene and sanitation-related issues in schools, a non-governmental organization, Pencils of Hope together with some governmental organizations in education helped formed an alliance to help bridge the gap that pertains in the country.
According to statistics done on menstrual hygiene matters in 2020, nine out of 10 girls in rural areas in the country missed school during their periods due to poor menstrual hygiene, which affects their participation and performance in school.
The inability of girls in some rural parts of the country to purchase sanitary towels as well as the lack of access to some basic commodities have contributed to this challenge.
Speaking at the Sustainable WASH in Schools forum held by Pencils of Hope in Accra, to discuss the issue of poor implementation of handwashing and personal hygiene in schools, the Managing Director of Programs at Pencils of Hope, Freeman Gobah indicated that the program was important due to its impact on girls.
“This is a forum to partner and bring our resources together to achieve a common goal. We have done so much in WASH, so this is to discuss ways we can all come together to support students,” he said.
“We will continue to beyond our 10 years, build new schools, toilets, urinals, dustbins, menstrual hygiene products especially, reusable sanitary pads that we are teaching students to make themselves because we all know the prices of sanitary pads have shot up,” he added.
The program was attended by dignitaries such as the Chief of WASH UNICEF, Country Director of Action Aid Ghana, CEO of Sky Fox, PPAG, among others.
Also speaking at the program, a representative of the Director General of the Education Service, Theresa Oppong Mensah said her outfit is in support of the drive to improve sanitation in schools.
“The GES in its entirety is pleased to have one of its stakeholders come up with an innovative program that gives us a clear picture of WASH in schools and bring together methods not only to improve sanitation but also the school environment and make it conducive for learning.”
“Let me assure you that GES is with you in your journey to improve the lives of children in Ghana,” she said.