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Menstrual Hygiene Day 2020: A group of Gurugram teenagers help migrant women workers on the road

ZoyaSethi, a 14-year-old has done something appreciable in the lockdown. This resident of Gurugram, along with her friends have taken to the discomfort of the womenfolk of migrant workers walking long to reach hometown.  

A group of 7 teens- Zaara, Zoya, Tanya, Sanaa, Ishaan, Arjan, and Aryaman, everyone aged 13-15 years had initiated a fund-raising campaign by the name ‘We Stand With Her’. They describe it as an effort to “uphold the dignity of the migrant women, who are walking back home with added discomfort. Support them with hygienic, sanitary necessities for their period”, on the campaign’s Instagram page. 

The group used to regularly discuss how lockdown has affected their lives. Then, Zoya wondered how her situation would be if she was the one who was stuck in that crisis. This they came up with an idea to facilitate women migrating workers, during their period.

Ishaan Mittal, one of the seven members, said that the migrant workers who are walking to their hometowns are being provided with necessities like food and water, sanitary hygiene, a primary need of women, has not been considered.

The campaign grew organically. They started searching for start-ups who could serve the purpose. But there were obstacles as most of the sanitary product manufacturers were not homegrown, and the lockdown restrictions prevented them from operating in full capacity. Mittal added that a few kits were very expensive. And so, their parents started their search for the right manufacturing partner.

It was then they came to know that the women would prefer cloth than disposable sanitary napkins. 

Finally, they connected with ‘Jatan Sansthan’, a not-for-profit organization based in Udaipur. It has been working on all aspects of reproductive health for nearly two decades now. With a project titled ‘Uger’ started in 2011, they had started manufacturing pure cotton pads that can be washed and reused. This project also involves the training of rural women to make their own napkins.  

So from then, the kids directed the funds directly to Jatan Sansthan, and they would provide napkins to them at subsidized prices. 
Through this initiative by the little children, not only do the women be provided with hygiene but also womenfolk get to earn a bit by the manufacturing process. 

They can be reached, to donate, at westandwithher@gmail.com

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