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Menstrual hygiene awareness: Helping young girls manage their periods better

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Let’s talk about periods.  It’s 2021 and gender equality is a relatively hot topic, but that sentence is still something that makes people feel uncomfortable.  The subject of menstruation is still something that is considered taboo and although many organisations are doing what they can to end the shame and eradicate period poverty, there is still a long way to go.

We are firm believers that we need to help break the silence, raise awareness and change negative social norms surrounding menstrual hygiene around the world, so that women and girls feel empowered to manage their periods safely, hygienically, with confidence and without embarrassment.  We should live in a world where no woman or girl is limited by something as natural and normal as menstruating.

To support this belief, we have created a free toolkit to help schools across the globe raise awareness and educate students around periods and good menstrual hygiene.

Download our free menstrual hygiene toolkit for schools

This toolkit contains a versatile range of downloadable and printable assets. Handouts, leaflets and posters are made available for you to circulate in washrooms, classrooms and staff rooms. Here is what it contains:

  • Handout: Tips for getting through your period at school
  • Leaflet: 6 myth-busters about periods
  • Posters for washrooms to raise awareness managing periods safely and hygienically
  • Poster for teachers and support staff to raise awareness around period poverty

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Take action to break the silence around menstrual hygiene

Periods are a fact of life. It isn’t something that we can change, yet there is a stigma attached to periods. Approximately 300 million women are having one right now, this means that one in seven women you speak to, at any given time, is menstruating.

In many parts of the world, periods can stop girls living normal lives. Girls still feel embarrassed or ashamed when on their periods, use improper substitutes as sanitary products, and even miss out on vital education because of them.

17% of women skip important activities out of fear their periods will be “found out”.

As one of the leading providers in hygiene solutions, we are committed to promoting better hygiene standards across the globe at Initial. In addition to our toolkit, we are taking additional actions all over the world to help ensure that girls and women don’t feel limited by their periods.

  • Initial UK has partnered with Freedom4Girls, a UK-registered charity fighting Period Poverty. Freedom4Girls actively support women and girls in both the UK and worldwide who struggle to access menstrual products. For every Period Poverty Vending Dispenser installed by Initial Washroom Hygiene, we will donate £5 to the charity as well as an additional £1 for every box of refills ordered for the units.
  • Initial India is working hard to promote the availability of feminine hygiene products in the workplace, tackling the fact that it is believed that only 16% of women in India have access to products, 82% of females lack knowledge them and that COVID-19 has caused an shortage in their supply.
  • As part of Rentokil Initial’s Better Futures community health initiative in Malaysia, we have an ‘Adopt-a-School’ campaign which equips one school in each state with washroom hygiene facilities and amongst other hygiene education activities, also builds feminine hygiene awareness for female students. 
  • A similar scheme takes place in Indonesia, where our expert microbiologists educate students in grades 7 to 12 on menstrual hygiene. 
  • The Hygiene Angels: Keeping Girls in School initiative has been developed in response to the ongoing issue of period poverty in South Africa, where educational talks are held and sanitary pads are donated to participating schools by Initial in partnership with Intengiso, together with free of charge Feminine Hygiene disposal units and hand sanitisers, to ensure that underprivileged schoolgirls across the country enjoy personal comfort today and a clean safe environment in future.

Hygiene resources for schools

At Initial, we are committed to supporting the education sector improve the hygiene facilities for both teachers, staff and pupils. As one of the global leaders in hygiene solutions, we provide a range of innovative products as well as educational pieces to help you ensure that your staff and pupils are kept safe and healthy.

We are responsible for teaching the next generation of women about periods and how to manage them safely and hygienically. Schools, colleges, universities and other educational institutions can all play a part in helping stop the stigma around menstrual hygiene. Educating students and providing them with the right hygiene facilities will help give women and girls the confidence not to be held back by their periods.

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Cat Allport-Kane

As Head of Brand and Marketing Communications at Rentokil Initial, I happily work on content design, research and copywriting all day long. I get a real buzz out of finding out everything I can about new topics, then finding creative ways to present what I've learnt to inform and educate others. Trained in international marketing with psychology on the side, I've been writing content for over 20 years for various companies and what I love about Rentokil Initial, is that the topics can be diverse, but ultimately, the themes are always about protecting people and enhancing lives.

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