Patricia Vin Okopi is the Program Manager for Girls with Period (GWP), an initiative that was started three years ago to help women and girls from low-income households have access to free sanitary pads and know everything about clean and healthy menstruation.
ABOUT GIRLS WITH PERIOD (GWP)
Girls with Period (GWP) Initiative is a social movement that educates women and girls, especially the less privileged ones about menstrual hygiene, self-esteem, sex education and also distributes sanitary pads to them.
It is an initiative that is committed to completely eradicating period poverty across Africa through seminars and distribution of sanitary pads to women and girls.
WHY SHE STARTED GIRLS WITH PERIOD (GWP)
The story behind Girls With Period is actually inspired by my late mother.
When we first had the talk on menstruation and hygiene, she explained that when she was young, she had little to no idea about the period and this led her not to have all the necessary details on how she can keep to a healthy and hygienic period. As a result of this, she used rags for her periods and didn’t have the proper hygiene needed when she started her period.
This made me wonder about other women or girls like her that don’t have the privilege to the right knowledge and information about menstrual hygiene. It motivated me to establish Girls With Period.
I wanted to do something for these women and make their menstrual cycle easier and healthier for them.
I thought of how to go about it and visualize that goal and the best ways I believe I could achieve that aim was through seminars, where I get to reach out to several girls out there and educate them about menstrual hygiene, while also giving them free sanitary pads.
HOW GIRLS AND WOMEN BENEFIT FROM GIRLS WITH PERIOD (GWP)
GWP has been able to reach out to over 10,000 women and girls in Africa. Currently, they have 5 chapters in Africa – Nigeria, Liberia, Lesotho, Sierra Leone and Cameroon.
They are working towards having more to reach more women and girls.
They visit schools and communities to carry out their mission on educating women and girls about menstrual hygiene and also to distribute free sanitary pads to them.
Through the yearly seminar called THE ROYAL DAISY, they have been able to educate over 10, 000 girls and women about their menstrual health, how to fix sanitary pads well, the best care to give themselves during their period.
They have also shared sanitary pads to them to promote a hygienic period and prevent the uses of rags and tissues for their period.
THE PINK BOX PROJECT
The Pink Box Project is a new project which will give GWP the opportunity to tackle emergency period cases of girls and women in unexpected and unplanned places.
They are going to donate free sanitary pads dispensers in public places such as schools, malls and banks.
They will also provide donation boxes in these places to be able to gather donations to reach more girls and to sustain the Pink Box Project.
It will be launched on December 2nd.
HOW YOU CAN SUPPORT THE GIRLS WITH PERIOD (GWP)
You can support by donating funds or sanitary pads to the organization. This will enable them to keep putting a smile on these women and girls’ faces.
You can also partner with them to make the Girls With Period (GWP) Initiative more successful and you can also volunteer to participate in their events.
GET IN TOUCH
For donations: 0503750010 Guaranty Trust Bank (GTB)
Contact Details: 07065694161 or 09021461070
Watch video below for more on their work