When I shared about the MHM practices with my mother, she was surprised too!

Shahnaz Bakhsh, 14 years, is a student of Government Girls High School Gharo, Thatta.
WaterAid/ Arshad Ali

Shahnaz and her mother never used any cloth/pad or material while menstruating in fact her mother used to stitch her 4-5 pants for school uniform so that during her periods, she can change them while they are stained. Even the other women of her village were also doing the same. After these sessions on MHM, she became aware of good practices and conveyed the same in her community. 

Shahnaz told that when I attended my first session on MHM arranged by WASH Club members of my school around a year ago. They oriented students about the basic hygiene practices during menstruation, I felt alienated as I had never adopted any such practice. Even at home, I was reluctant to discuss this thing with my mother and sisters.

At my home or village, women had stained clothes during their periods, and they used to hide them from the male members. When I told my mother that clothes will not get stained if we use the cloth or some sanitary napkin, she asked me what a pad is? how we can use it?

Through regular sessions on MHM, I was able to not only manage good hygiene practices during menstruation for myself but spread the word in my community/village as well. Now, women at our village know how to use cloth and even hand made pads too.

WaterAid is implementing a menstrual hygiene-focused GAC-funded project “HerWASH” in district Thatta, Sindh. The project aims to enhance the Menstrual Hygiene Management (MHM) of women and adolescent girls in Pakistan.