Friday, May 17, 2013

Days For Girls

Sometimes things happen that get you moving in a new direction. A little while ago, an acquaintance of a friend introduced me to Days For Girls. Here's a little info about it from their web site.

What if not having sanitary supplies kept you isolated during menstruation? DAYS without school. DAYS without income. No leaving your room... for DAYS. It happens worldwide to women in struggling communities. Girls miss up to 3 months of school in just 1 year. Girls use leaves, mattress stuffing, newspaper, corn husks, rocks, anything they can find... all to try to stay in school. Worse, girls are often exploited in exchange for hygiene . It turns out this issue is one of the keys to social change. It's hard to imagine, but true for women all over the world.

Not having given any real thought to this issue, this was an eye opener. Days For Girls aims to provide menstrual kits to women and girls all over the world. The idea percolated and grew in a wonderful way.

Knowing I was a dressmaker, I was asked to donate fabric. I volunteered to make some kits and have enlisted the help of a few doll club friends. My sister and her husband came to visit last month. They are active in a charity for kids in Tanzania  called ABCD - Art Building Children's Dreams. I showed them the kit and they knew the need was there. They got very enthusiastic. Now my sister is sewing kits and organizing a team to make enough for all the girls at the school they sponsor.

I mentioned days for Girls to my neighbor  who similarly is involved with a group called CanHave in Uganda. She also jumped on the project and has started sewing kits and getting others involved.

This kind of energy is amazing to watch. At the fabric store, they asked what she wanted the waterproof fabric for, as they'd had a few people asking for it. When told about the kits, they got on board too!! Amazing!

I love the idea of being able to contribute in a tangible way. Giving money always seems rather nebulous to me. This has results. The missionaries and charity workers who go to places like Africa and Haiti take kits with them and they get distributed at nursing stations.  Days For Girls hope to pass along some education with each kit. Many girls are told nothing about why they menstruate. Hard to believe

This is a kit - girls get a bag, 2 waterproof shields  8 cloth pads, panties, wash cloth and 2 plastic zip-loc bags. Each kit is planned to last 3 years  The kit has been so well thought out and is easy for any sewer to make.

I hope in telling you about my latest project, that you will join us too. Ottawa has a local chapter of Days For Girls, who collect the kits. There may be one near you that you can send them to. 


  1. This is a really wonderful thing you are doing.

  2. I find it satisfying to offer something tangible to these girls, rather than money, which floats off into the ether.


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