The Knickers Project

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No the title is not a joke, nor is it a reference to money. It refers to yet another side of the work carried out by the Yellowmen of Kadongdong in West Pokot.

Over the past few years, teachers and nurses have become concerned to promote the education and welfare of girls. In so doing, the life of some of our girls is becoming better understood and the problems they face a matter of concern.

As part of a medical team initiative, our Yellowmen nurses produced a presentation on menstruation designed to educate girls in what was happening to their own bodies, and also as a tool to get local teachers and medics to help change the lack of support for girls suffering from painful periods and lack of basic knowledge. In order to add to the presentation, sufficient sanitary towels were taken to supply each girl attending one of the presentations with a one month supply. The presentation also looked at the ‘towels’ made and used by the girls themselves and the whole question of hygiene.

In the follow up talks with local nurses and teachers, it soon transpired that the problem was even worse than was initially thought. Not only was there a lack of sanitary towels that the girls could afford, they often couldn’t even afford sufficient pants to keep them supplied during their periods.

Once this became apparent, the Yellowmen ladies went into action and the Knickers Project was born. So far sufficient money has been raised to purchase 1500 pairs of pants to be given out to girls when they receive their free sanitary towels during the September 2018 Yellowmen visit.

A small thing you might think, but not so. Those girls who cannot even afford sanitary towels or even sufficient pants to last them through their periods will not attend school. So each month they miss anything between 2 and 5 days amounting to perhaps 10 weeks throughout the year.

1500 pairs of knickers may not be sufficient but it is a start, and the knickers project is a bit ‘elastic’ in that it will grow as more money is collected. If you would like to help by making a Knickers donation please look at the contact details on our web site. As a guide, we can purchase 1 dozen pairs of pants in Kenya for Kes 550/- or about £4, far less than the cost of carrying free knickers to Kenya by air.

Yellowman Eddie

 

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