About 600 girls from three communities within the Obuasi Municipality, Obuasi East and Akrofuomdistricts, have taken delivery of quantities of free sanitary pads which can last for, at least, six months.
The gesture was under the auspices of the Rotary Club of Obuasi in collaboration with Girls Shall Grow, a Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) based in Obuasi, to educate girls on menstrual hygiene and teenage pregnancy.
It formed part of the declaration made by Rotary International President, directing all clubs to make girl-child empowerment their number one priority for 2021 and 2022.
The Past President of the Obuasi Rotary Club, Mr Sarwan Kumar, who led the club to make the donation emphasised the importance of supporting girls during periods of menstruation.
He said the club recognised the challenges most girls go through during menstruation.
“In our quest to empower the girl-child, we have decided to educate them on safe menstruation, teenage pregnancy and also donate sanitary pads which they can use for the next six months.We are optimistic that this will take some burden off them and their parents to enable them focus more on their studies,” he said.
The President-elect for Obuasi Rotary, Mr Godfrey Mwachande, reiterated that the club would continue to offer support to girls during menstruation in a bid to ensure that communities beyond Obuasi were covered.
“Since menstruation is a natural process, we are aware of the challenges hence are always ready to help,” he added.
Executive Director of the NGO, Louisa Amoah, lauded Rotarians in Ghana for the gesture and also for constructing Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) facilities in schools to support their course.
She said hitherto, girls were unable to manage their menstruation safely and hygienically due to the absence of proper WASH facilities, “but through our advocacy, now we have seen WASH facilities being constructed in schools in Obuasi.”
Mrs Cecilia Salifu, the Obuasi Municipal Girls Coordinator, on her part, proposed the provision of pad banks to make sanitary pads easily accessible by girls in schools.
She underscored the importance of making sanitary pads available to girls who sometimes go through difficulties in observing safe menstruation.
She commended efforts made by groups like Rotary Club of Obuasi and Girls Shall Grow in empowering girls and providing free sanitary pads.
DelphineEsiGborgblorvor, director of health for Obuasi East district, also shared support for the exercise carried out by Rotarians in Obuasi.
She advocated the project be scaled-up to cover more girls in the communities, especially those in schools.