Improving menstrual hygiene in Malawian schools

The project ran from 2020 until 2023 and aimed to end stigma and discrimination against adolescent girls who had started menstruation by promoting positive support for them. UNICEF was focusing on schools that had already benefited from improved WASH services through the living schoolyard projects in order to address the issue of access to water and sanitation facilities.

Project outcomes

  • Education and awareness:

    • 6,648 girls and 3,787 boys increased knowledge on Menstrual Health (MH) through peer mentors and mother group members.

    • Around 13,000 child-friendly booklets on MH printed and distributed to adolescent girls and teachers in English and Chichewa.

    • 4,682 community members increased their knowledge on MH through engagements in awareness campaigns.

    • Prevailing cultural myths and taboos on menstruation challenged through trainings, awareness campaigns, social media, and radio/TV programmes.

  • Training and peer support:

    • 446 learners (366 girls and 80 boys) from 50 schools trained as peer mentors and male champions. The 366 girls also acquired skills in making local sanitary pads.

  • Health and hygiene supplies:

    • 500 buckets and 1,000 tablets of soaps distributed in 50 targeted schools.

    • 6,800 girls provided with reusable sanitary pads and underwear.

  • Impact on school attendance:

    • Targeted schools observed a reduction in absenteeism of girls due to menstrual bullying.

UNICEF is a non-governmental organisation that advocates for the protection of children's rights, helps children across the world meet basic needs and expand their opportunities to reach their full potential. Re&Act and UNICEF have partnered to support innovative and sustainable projects for children since 2006.

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