On the occasion of Menstrual Hygiene Day 2018, SNV in Bangladesh organised a week-long awareness campaign for garment workers from 28 May – 2 June, to build awareness on proper menstrual hygiene practices and the taboos surrounding menstruation.
The Menstrual Hygiene Awareness week-long campaign was organised as part of SNV's Working with Women-II project, an initiative funded by the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands to improve health and well-being of workers, with a special focus on sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR).
Because the garment sector is the largest employer of women in Bangladesh, it is the centre of our efforts to build awareness on menstrual hygiene management, and to break down the stigma and taboo around menstruation.
Whilst our latest research highlights improvements in menstrual hygiene practice among female garment workers in Bangladesh, a significant number of workers continue to use rags in place of sanitary napkins. Unhygienic practice could result to 'embarassing stains' and harmful infections, resulting to poor health, loss of productivity and dignity.
Organising activities across 10 factories during the week, SNV in Bangladesh engaged more than 750 garment workers. Each event started with a presentation by factory doctors on menstrual hygiene, followed by a quiz competition and awarding ceremony.
Menstrual Hygiene Management is an important part of SRHR interventions under the Working with Women-II project. The project carries out a holistic approach in changing the hygienic behaviour of workers, promoting hygienic practices, delivering sanitary pads at the workplace, and building factory capacity to improve menstrual hygiene management through a basket solution.