Let’s talk... Thane teenagers educate ruralfolk about menstrual hygiene

  • | Friday | 7th December, 2018

“While majority of them used cloth pads they were at least aware of the hygiene to be maintained, except in Kothali area,” said Akshi. THANE: All of 12 years of age, Akshi Takle and Ishaan Khadse have been crowned as the ‘young sanitary pad revolutionaries’ by their classmates after the duo travelled across the state sensitising and spreading awareness on menstruation and the importance of early sex education It all started when Takle experienced the monthly cycle for the first time, last year. “In Wada and Muktai Nagar, people were not open to early sex education as they feared that this would increase curiosity among the youngsters.”The class VII students not only provided the women with the dos and don’ts through street plays and skits with the help of gynaecologists and other doctors, but the young scientists have also curated cloth and woolen sanitary napkins.The judges were so baffled by the topic that the children have now been selected to present their research at the Indian Science Congress to be held in January. Initially scared by the sudden pain and the blood stains, the minor was well prepared as she had been briefed about it in school.However, a thought crossed her mind about how girls in different socio-cultural milieus would deal with this and that when she decided to work on it extensively and soon was confident that her project would be the right fit for the National Children’s Science Congress.The class VII student of Smt Sulochandevi Singhania School spent months researching the topic, formulating surveys and questionnaires, meeting experts in the field to conducting experiments in laboratories and the budding scientists began their journey to the rural pockets of Wada, Kothali-Jalgaon and Muktai Nagar for their survey and data collection on menstrual hygiene awareness and the harmful effects of the disposal of commercially available sanitary napkins to the environment.“We spoke to 60 women from these regions and 200 more from the urban areas of Thane along with five women from the ‘below poverty line’ residing in the city,” said Ishaan.Akshi said they asked them questions like what type of sanitary napkins they use and whether they are open to using the eco-friendly, reasonably priced options.

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