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Regrettably, school-aged girls in Guinea will miss lessons during their menstruation cycle or drop out of school altogether when they start menstruating. This is largely due to a lack of sanitary products; appropriate toilet facilities; bullying and stigma surrounding menstruation, largely driven by a lack of knowledge and education.

Here at URBOND, we are on a mission to change this. Against a target of 20%, we have been able to increase girls’ attendance with our partner school to 62.2% within just 18 months.

And that is not all. We are also working with partners to increase the school attendance of girls in the Republic of Guinea by providing them with menstrual equipment and a better understanding of their bodies. This will stop them from dropping out of school due to period poverty and a lack of awareness about menstruation.

And even more that, we are actively educating all genders to break the stigma and ensure this is not a barrier to education.

We want to continue this essential work, but to do so we really need your help. Just £10 can provide a menstruation kit and an enlightening and vital discussion with a group of children. Together, we can ensure girls get to school, and stay in education. Help us to help them. Donate today.

Aicha Fofana

Felt embarrassed to be a girl and felt like it was a punishment,” recalled 14-year-old Aicha, describing her first period. 

She was in class in Dubreka, Republic of Guinea, when it happened. Luckily for her, it was coming to the end of the class for the day and people were living to go home so she waited with her friend for nearly 2 hours with blood all over her uniform. After everyone left, her friend looked around for a cloth to manage the blood. “I was not knowledgeable about how and why it happens, and what to expect. So, naturally, I was scared, confused and I decided to leave school.”

Her experience is all too common in Dubreka, In the Republic of Guinea and Africa as a whole. Many young girls still lack basic knowledge about their bodies, and their sexual and reproductive health and struggle to access menstrual health kits. Many struggle with shame and taboos surrounding menstruation. These issues undermine girls’ health and rights. Girls can be subjected to stigma and bullying and many are leaving school due to difficulty managing their menstrual hygiene.

We have been working with schools, local leaders, partners and parents delivering training and equipment to support girls’ education. Over 10,000 young girls have received training and menstruation kits. In addition, we have been campaigning in communities to stop period shaming in homes, schools and all other important spaces. Our aim being to prevent young girls from skipping or dropping out of school due to period poverty and a lack of awareness about menstruation.

Access to sanitary products, dignified treatment and education on menstrual health management is a human rights issue that all of us must strive for. 

You really can help us make a huge difference, please donate to support our work 

martina holding a baby
Andrew with a child