ActionAid is a global movement of people working together to further human rights and defeat poverty for all.

We should invest in girls

Tuesday, February 9, 2016 - 17:32

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Adolescence is a crucial stage of life and one that is challenging to most girls because of its physical and psychological changes. One of the major physiological changes in adolescent girls is menstruation. It is because of this that I believe that menstruation is no longer just a health concern but also an educational policy concern. Adolescence is a stage in life from childhood to adulthood and is something worth celebrating, yet for many girls even I being one of them when I went through adolescence, this phase often brings challenges that push girls out of schools and social activities making the celebration short lived.I chose to speak on this topic because I’ve experienced it first hand. I grew up in Orange Farm and was raised by a single mother who couldn’t afford to buy me sanitary towels when my monthly cycle came. I had to use other alternatives like cloths when this time of the month came, I had to skip school for the number of days my cycle went for and as a result of this my performance was greatly affected at school and also because of this I had zero self esteem, I never had confidence in myself. We need gender responsive services that will advocate for free sanitary pad for all women and girls who can not afford to buy them. To advocate for all women and girls out there that sanitary towels and and should be a basic human right and every woman and girl need to have access to it. I say we need to ensure that no girl ever misses school because of this. ActionAid’s vision is to eliminate poverty and this cannot be achieved as long as there are women and girls who are uneducated.


By Sandelwa Dyantyisi (Activista South Africa)