To: Parliament RSA & Ministers Angie Motshekga, Aaron Motsoaledi & Bathabile Dlamini

Pads, bleeding the poor dry!

We call on you to supply essential sanitary products to young girls, particularly those from low income communities across the country.

Minister Angie Motshekga, the Department of Basic education, provides nutrition and other necessities to learners from quintiles 1-3. We ask that the government also provide sanitary products for these learners to allow them to continue their education - they are as much a necessity as food.

While we recognise the efforts made by your department in conjunction with P&G(Always) in some province, but a once-off charity and PR stunt is not sufficient. We call on you to work with the Ministers included here and standardise provision of pads and other sanitary products to the young learners who have come of age.

It’s time for our national government to pay attention and find a long-lasting solution to a social problem that affects many young girls. Children in education shouldn’t have to feel ashamed because of a problem that has a very simple solution.

Why is this important?

Akhona is in grade eight. Like many of her classmates, she often misses school when she has her periods because her family cannot afford sanitary pads [1]. Akhona is not alone. On average in Mzansi. a girl will miss 60 days of school because of her period [2]. And some are forced to use socks, newspapers and worse because they can’t afford sanitary pads.

Over time this can cause girls to drop-out completely. If they struggle through, they often find themselves unable to fully take part in school activities.

Livity Africa's LiveVIPZA campaign, which initiated the parliament challenge, aims to present a plan in June on how to provide sanitary pads to low income communities to the Health Portfolio Committee. But the implementation requires that the Ministers of Basic Education, Health and Social Development kick start the plan.

[1] I use a sock as a sanitary pad, says Langa learner
http://www.groundup.org.za/article/i-use-sock-sanitary-pad-says-langa-learner_2418/

[2] Dignity Dreams article with information on how many girls miss school a month and in a year: http://www.ngopulse.org/organisation/dignity-dreams


Reasons for signing

  • A dignity of a young woman is very important, it builds confidence and character.. One can't miss school because they can't afford a packet of sanitary towels.. The young women, are our next future leaders.
  • To be comfortable is very important and it's not by choice that females menstruate, so having sanitary pads would really help those who don't have.
  • I was given an assignment to do on project so my team and I choose sanitary pads as one of the projects. while I was doing my research it broke my heart to see how many girls miss school and lose their dignity because of being unable to afford sanitary pads.

Updates

2016-03-17 06:53:47 +0200

1,000 signatures reached

2016-03-15 22:19:42 +0200

500 signatures reached

2016-03-15 15:53:35 +0200

100 signatures reached

2016-03-15 15:13:35 +0200

50 signatures reached

2016-03-15 15:05:12 +0200

25 signatures reached

2016-03-15 14:55:26 +0200

10 signatures reached