Period Poverty | Diana Nelson | TEDxIntl School Of Uganda

Period Poverty | Diana Nelson | TEDxIntl School Of Uganda

Menstrual Health Challenges

  • Alice from Kenya faced humiliation, punishment, and exam failure due to lack of menstrual products, hindering her university prospects.
  • Eunice from Malawi experienced confusion, shame, and isolation during her first period due to lack of education and support.
  • Christine from Kenya resorted to sexual transactions for menstrual pads, resulting in pregnancy and homelessness.
  • In rural Kenya and Uganda, girls engage in sexual transactions for menstrual products, affecting their education and opportunities.
  • The harmful practice of "chapati" in Nepal isolates menstruating women and girls, leading to health risks and stigma.

Global Impact of Menstrual Health

  • Globally, 500 million women and girls lack access to adequate menstrual products, impacting their education, health, and well-being.
  • Menstrual health encompasses education, facilities, services, a positive environment, care and treatment, and unrestricted participation in activities.
  • Ignoring menstrual health has significant costs, including health challenges, early marriages, shame, presenteeism, absenteeism, and decreased productivity.
  • Menstrual health issues affect women and girls from all backgrounds, not just in low to mid-income countries but also in high-income countries.

Period Poverty and Stigma

  • Period poverty, the lack of access to menstrual products, is a real issue affecting individuals even in affluent communities.
  • Open conversations about menstrual health and period poverty can normalize the topic, reduce stigma, and empower individuals to seek support.
  • Educating both women and men about menstrual health is crucial for creating a supportive environment and addressing menstruation-related challenges.

Eunice's Story and Advocacy

  • Eunice's experience highlights the importance of addressing menstrual health and breaking the stigma.
  • After dropping out of school, Eunice returned in her early 20s with knowledge about periods and became an advocate for menstrual health.
  • She partnered with the First Lady of Malawi to address menstrual health in the country.

Call to Action

  • The speaker challenges the audience to have conversations about period poverty and menstrual health to break the stigma and ensure women and girls can manage menstruation with dignity.

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