Volunteer-Made Menstrual Kits Make a Difference in Mali

By Merritt Frey, Executive Director

For the second year in a row, the hard work of a group of volunteers here in the U.S. is making a big difference for our girls in Mali.

In our remote villages, girls often have no access to materials to manage their periods. This means they stay home from school for a week each month -- just imagine missing 25% of school! Girls fall behind in classes, and sometimes that leads to dropping out altogether.

Luckily, there is a lot of work going on these days to find simple solutions for managing periods in places like our villages. We've adopted one of the very well known approaches -- handmade kits designed by Days for Girls. Our dedicated team of volunteers makes most of the kit items, and donates much of the rest. Learn more about getting involved.

Last year, we provided kits to all the girls in our three Girls Project pilot villages. This year, we only needed to provide kits to our new 7th grade girls and girls who moved to the villages. Along with the kits, we provide education about what the period is, how to use the kits, and basic sexual health. 

Like teenagers anywhere, our girls are both entranced and embarrassed by the discussion at the beginning, but they come out of their shells, ask good questions, and are very happy with their beautiful new kits.

A special thank you to all the volunteers who make this effort possible for our girls! Learn more about our Girls Project.