If you were told that the sanitary napkins could be reused, would you go for it? ‘Yes’ seems to be the answer from many women, who have been using them for the past five years. There have been no complaints from the women who have opted for reusable sanitary napkins.
Sharing these details were social activists from the United Kingdom Charlotte and Russell Gard, who are here at Zilla Parishad High School at Isnapur. Of the total student strength of 595 at the school, about 350 are girls.
Ms. Charlotte and Mr. Russell Gard are taking part in the programme organised by Rural Organisation for Society Empowerment (ROSE), an NGO. They run an NGO called BUREAU back in their home town Glossop, U.K., that works for promoting hygiene among women, isolated persons and mentally-ill. Ms. Charlotte with the assistance of her team members developed the reusable sanitary napkins that are easy to carry anywhere.
“Used turkey towels and other material, including water-proof fabric, can be used to make these napkins. Once cut in the required format, it can be stitched within 20 minutes. It can have four layers and the third layer will be that of water-proof fabric,” Ms. Charlotte told The Hindu . While admitting that no scientific study on the napkins has been conducted, she claimed that a large number of women were using them in the U.K. for the past five years and there were no complaints so far.
“A girl student should never miss school due to her periods. This is our motto,” said Ms. Charlotte, adding that these napkins can be used for one year if they were washed with hand. She said the use-and-throw napkins have become an environmental issue across the globe. They have yet to work out the cost of the each napkin.
“This is nothing new. Earlier, we used to use old sarees and clothes as napkins during menstruation. They are bringing the old tradition back in a sophisticated way. The question is how many would be ready to wash them and reuse?” asked school headmistress Y. Spandana.
As part of the programme, students at the school are being trained to stitch these napkins.