19 December 2018
Motherhood Hospitals, India’s fastest growing network of women & children’s hospital join hands with Spherule Foundation (an NGO that works on various development & educational program for women -empowerment & health) attempting Guinness Book of World Records by taking the initiative of educating adolescent girls on the importance of menstrual health and hygiene at Kendriya Vidyalaya. Around 1700 people is the Largest group of adolescent girls, boys, men & women present under one roof to gather awareness on Menstrual Health and Hygiene.
Dr. Rajeshwari Pawar, Gynecologist & Obstetrician from Motherhood Hospitals, Kharadi, Pune, addressed on the importance of menstrual hygiene, breaking stereotypes and myths that accompany menstruation for 38 min 8 sec. This initiative will be the Guinness Book of World Records for largest group of adolescent girls, boys, men and women present together for awareness of menstrual health and hygiene.
In India only 18% of the 355 million menstruating women use sanitary napkins and with the remaining 82% of women unable to afford sanitary napkins, they resort to using unhygienic substances such as newspapers, sand, leaves, mud or unsterilized clothes/rags. Such unhygienic practices lead to itching, burning, vaginal and urinary tract infections, infertility and other reproductive health complications.
Speaking on the initiative, Dr. Geeta Bora, Founder, Spherule Foundation, said, “The global silence and shame around menstruation is alarming. In India alone, 23-million girls drop-out of schools annually, (i.e. 1 in every 5 girls) due to the lack of menstrual hygiene management facilities like availability of sanitary napkins and logical awareness of menstruation. In collaboration with Motherhood Hospitals, we are taking a small step towards making the country more open to the fact that menstruation is not a taboo. Menstruation matters to our girls, and it does matter to everyone, everywhere. We experience it and we are here to shape its experience.”
Dr. Rajeshwari Pawar, Consultant Gynecologist & Obstetrician Motherhood Hospitals, said, “Young girls usually have a lot of fear, doubts and misconceptions about menstruation. This is a unique initiative where young girls, boys, men and women are educated on a taboo subject as menstruation and is a welcome change. This is providing people with information on the physiology of menstruation and take away the myths surrounding it. I believe that Spherule Foundation is providing a great platform to stress on how to maintain menstrual hygiene and to demystify several myths surround this subject. Initiatives like these are the need of the hour and we are extremely happy to be a part of this with Spherule.”
According to a survey conducted by UNICEF, 80% of surveyed women store their menstrual cloth in a hidden dirty place for repeated use. 40% failed to change their clothes frequently or wash them with soap after use. They are too ashamed to wash their sanitary clothes in open and wear over soaked and dirty cloth for an entire day without a change. 50% failed to dry their menstrual rags outside and in full sun which is an essential condition required to kill bacteria. Lack of privacy, safety and toilets make things worse. This initiative is trying to help our society understand the importance of menstruation and how to overcome the stigma around it.