Eco-Friendly Menstrual Products in Ghana: Breaking the Taboo

In recent years, there has been a growing global conversation surrounding menstrual health and hygiene, shedding light on the challenges faced by millions of women and girls worldwide. However, in many parts of the world, including Ghana, menstruation remains shrouded in silence and stigma.

Traditionally, menstruation has been met with secrecy and shame in Ghanaian society. Conversations around periods are often hushed, and access to menstrual products particularly for those in rural or underserved communities can be limited. This has significant implications for the health, education, and dignity of women and girls across the country.

However, a shift is underway. More women and girls are seeking sustainable and eco-friendly alternatives to conventional disposable pads and tampons. This shift is not only driven by environmental concerns but also by a desire for healthier and more cost-effective options.

One such alternative gaining popularity is eco-friendly reusable menstrual pads. Made from materials such as cotton, bamboo, or hemp, these pads are washable and can last for years with proper care. Not only are they environmentally friendly, but they also provide a more comfortable and breathable option compared to their disposable counterparts.

Moreover, initiatives and organizations are emerging to promote the use of eco-friendly menstrual products and break the silence surrounding menstruation. These initiatives focus not only on providing access to sustainable products but also on menstrual education and advocacy. By challenging cultural taboos and promoting open dialogue, they aim to empower women and girls to manage their periods with confidence and dignity.

In commemoration of the International Menstrual Hygiene Day on May 28, 2024, Inspire Action through its EmpowerHerFlow project, seeks to provide 150 reusable menstrual pads to women and girls in underserved communities in the country. We intend to distribute through our outreach programs and workshops, we will not only distribute reusable pads but also provide education on menstrual health and hygiene, empowering women and girls to take control of their bodies and break free from the stigma surrounding menstruation.

The adoption of eco-friendly menstrual products in Ghana represents more than just a shift towards sustainability; it signifies a step towards menstrual equity and empowerment. By embracing these alternatives, women and girls are reclaiming ownership of their bodies and challenging the societal norms that have kept menstruation hidden in the shadows for far too long.

However, there is still much work to be done. Sustainable menstrual products must be made more accessible and affordable, particularly for those living in rural or low-income areas. Governments, NGOs, and local communities must come together to ensure that all women and girls have access to the resources and support they need to manage their periods safely and with dignity.

By Jessel Lartey Therson-Cofie

 

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