Quick Read
12 June 2018

Promoting Menstrual Health: The Perfect Fit

Menstruation and sexual health are taboo topics in Indonesia. A culture of silence contributes to a lack of knowledge on menstrual hygiene management (MHM) and Sexual Reproductive Health Rights (SRHR). With ‘The Perfect Fit: A Smart Entry Point to Reshape Menstrual Health Management in Indonesia’, Simavi, Kopernik and AYO Indonesia are working together on designing and distributing reusable menstrual pads for women in Indonesia, as well as educating local communities about their rights. By using the product as development process, it can serve as an entry point to open up a dialogue about Menstrual Health.

In rural areas, access to products managing menstruation hygienically are limited and are not cost-effective long-term. Women are often not aware of their SRHR needs or are too embarrassed to discuss their problems which negatively influences health seeking behaviour. This is reflected in low uptake of SRHR services and poor SRHR indicators. The taboo surrounding menstruation has serious consequences for the lives and development of these women.

Simavi, Kopernik and AYO Indonesia are working together to change this discourse by making reusable pads available for rural women in Manggarai, the East Nusa Tenggara region of Indonesia. By encouraging discussions about menstruation and other health related issues, we ensure these distributed pads meet the local women’s needs and wishes and dialogues about Menstrual Health are started. Besides, a broad variety of people (men and women) is educated about SRHR related topics, including sellers of these reusable pads, making them more aware of these rights.

Since these pads are created by women, this will empower them as active members of their communities, aware of their reproductive rights and able to educate others. This makes the project, which aims to reach 550,000 women and girls, sustainable on multiple levels.

Read more about our cooperation here.

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