Menstrual hygiene education for girls in Rwanda
In some communities that we work with, taboos and secrecy surrounding periods means that often girls have never heard of menstruation before their first period, making it a confusing and traumatic experience. Without sex education, myths about periods continue. Girls tell us that they’ve been told they can’t do certain things in their daily life when they have their period, from using salt in their cooking to milking animals, or that they can’t get pregnant if they have sex while they have their period.
Our girls’ clubs and period safe rooms give girls an environment where they can get information and ask questions about periods, sex and pregnancy, so that they are better informed about their bodies.
Learn more about how our approach is helping girls like Denise.
Building safe, separate toilets
Without a safe, private toilet at school, girls can’t feel secure and comfortable going to the toilet. This is a problem throughout girls’ school lives, but it is especially problematic when they are on their period.
A study in Ethiopia found that 50% of girls miss between one and four days of school per month due to menstruation.1 The impact of girls losing out on secondary education is huge: if all women had a secondary education, child deaths would be cut in half, saving 3 million lives.2
Read how our new toilets in Ethiopia will help girls stay in school.
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Find out more about our work on periods and menstrual hygiene in our latest blogs.
Help a girl stay in school by giving a monthly gift.
ActionAid started working in Rwanda in 1996. Find out more about what we do in Rwanda.