CAPE MOUNT-In an effort to ensure that those relent Government Ministries and Agencies within Grand Cape Mount County engage in formulating solution as a means of addressing the constrains girls and women face with menstrual health and hygiene, a local organization- Public Health Initiative Liberia (PHIL) with support from WaterAid Liberia, conducted a two day Menstrual Health and Hygiene Management County level training in Sinje , Grand Cape Mount County.
The participants were taken from the Ministries of Internal Affairs, Education, Health, Gender Children and Social Protection, Youth and Sports including the media.
Speaking on the significance of the training on Thursday September 9 , 2021 following the two days training, PHIL Project Coordinator on WASH Project Zowah Nenyeah said the training focuses on menstrual Health and Hygiene Management , the kind of policy that needs to be put into places relating to menstrual Health and Hygiene Management including advocacy in Liberia.
“The participants were very happy about the training. There were lots of knowledge gained from the training, there were lots of Government Officials that appreciated the training because some of them were lacking knowledge on issues concerning menstrual health, but from the training they were very happy and they will go back and implement those various polices, including the allotment of budget for the menstrual health and hygiene management “ She indicated.
She added, menstrual health in school is vital because it will prevent more girls dropping out of schools.
One of the critical aspects of the menstrual health in school will help to elevate the embarrassment most girls face in schools when they are menstruating, especially when their cloths are mess-up with those boys not understanding the significance of girls or women to menstruate and such girl student will be ashamed, thus allowing her to stay aware from school.
“Sometimes menstrual cram, a girl can fail in school because she will have to stay out of school for a week and she will not be able to capture those notes and it will help to allow her to fail; so if you have menstrual hygiene management area in school and the products , they will have access to the products; where they will be able to change their pads, a girl will not have to go home to change, she will have access to the materials to change” she noted.
Madam Nenyeah said each ministry has formulated their plans on how they will be able to implement those plans in the area of menstrual health management and hygiene in schools and other sectors within Grand Cape Mount County.
Also speaking was WaterAid Liberia Program Officer Dequemine Tobolo who said they were able to get service providers; the county Authorities especially, the Development superintendent with the objective of eradicating those miss beliefs and norms about menstruation.
“During our section, it was participatory , the participants were in working sessions , given feedbacks, so it was great. At the end of the workshop, each of the line ministries went in a group and were able to come out with a them of government support to menstrual health at their various ministries line level. It was good and it bought a feeding of confidence that yes these line ministries are going to incorporate menstrual hygiene in their budget,” he noted.
Also speaking , Grand Cape Mount County Development Superintendent Boima Kamara commited the county development plan to include menstrual health .
The education for girls to take the issue of menstrual health and hygiene management with in the county is key to the improvement of girl’s health, including their up growth, superintendent Kamara indicated.
It is due to that reason according to the Development Superintendent prompted to fully participate in the two days Menstrual Health and Hygiene Management workshop to get those relevant information so that he can make a vital decision during the county sitting and other stakeholders gathering about such development for the girls in schools as a means of keeping the female students in schools.
He said, it time that parents do away with acts of not teaching their children about menstruation, but should now begin to open up with their female children on how to take care of themselves when they are menstruating.
However, the officer in Charge of the Sinja Health Center Jeta Snch noted that they, as participants were able to understand those myth belief about women and girls when they are menstruating.
“If a woman or a girl menstruating is clean , she can do anything; she can go to church or mosques , she can cook any food and can even have sex during menstruation; is a natural thing “ she noted.
The Sinja OIC Heath Center assured the team’s commitment in providing the educative messages to the various health facilities including the education to both boys and men to be supportive of helping those female during their time of menstruation.