Rotary to launch Project Sumitra - Towards Use of Sustainable Menstrual Hygiene Products
Targeting Better Health, Environment & Livelihoods for Women
On Girl Child Empowerment Day
The Rotary Club of Hyderabad Deccan (RCHD, along with partner clubs to launch Project Sumitra tomorrow in the city. The project is aimed towards encouraging and facilitating the use of sustainable menstrual hygiene products. The project targets better health, environment and livelihoods. The project will be announced on the eve of Girl Child Empowerment Day of Rotary International District 3150.
Under this project, Rotary District 3150 to get manufactured two products—
01. Re-usable Cloth Sanitary Pads and
02. Sanitary cups.
Both are biodegradable products. The launch will be announced in two functions to be held simultaneously on Sunday at Hyderabad Solitaire Global Schools, Attapur Branch, Sri Sai Janachaithanya Colony, Near Sunrise Valley, Upparpally, and also in Guntur.
The Project Sumitra aims to set up local production where local women will manufacture cloth pads.
Crash the supply chain costs to make safe and comfortable menstrual cups available at an affordable price. Train, equip and deploy trained Self-Help Groups to evangelize, teach & sell/distribute these products in local communities.
Made from organic and chemical-free fabrics, reusable sanitary pads are safe and easy to use. Menstrual cups are made from 100% medical-grade silicone and do not affect the body’s PH while reducing the risk of infection. Reusable products last for years and reduce the amount of landfill waste generated. Cloth pads are also easily compostable.
Convenience and low costs of reusable products can also reduce period truancy in schools, colleges & the workforce. Disposable products provide no benefit to the bottom of the pyramid - Reusable products are made and sold by women groups and distributed in the community by women and evangelists who become advisors. This network, built on personal connections and trust, is a powerful engine for future health and habit improvement initiatives.
It is a project of Rotary District 3150. The Rotary District along with the clubs will mobile self-help groups, train them to manufacture these sustainable products in mass scale and will also create employment for them in the process
Managing menstrual waste is a mammoth task. India has close to 12.3 billion disposable sanitary napkins to be taken care of every year. And the majority of them are not biodegradable or compostable.
Of 336 million menstruating women in India, about 36% use single-use disposable sanitary napkins - 12.3 billion pads annually - producing enormous menstrual waste. Bangalore, for example, alone produces approximately 90,000 kgs of sanitary waste per day. Indians pour Rs. 17,000 Cr annually on this environmentally terrible “necessity”. Importantly, disposable products are a veritable cornucopia of plastic - they cannot be recycled or reused, get dumped in landfills and will take 100’s of years to degrade and if burnt produce toxic dioxins & furans. Chemicals present in disposable napkins cause infections, rashes, and other health problems. They are also significantly costly.