Procter & Gamble (P&G) has increased its commitment to help reduce school absenteeism in girls through provision of over 790,000 pads through its Always Keeping Girls in School Programme. The program will see over 12,000 primary school girls receive a year’s supply of Always sanitary pads, underwear and education booklets.
Since 2006, Procter & Gamble’s Always Keeping Girls in School Programme has helped keep over 100,000 Kenyan girls in school. This was partly in response to a study conducted by the Rockefeller Foundation, which revealed that 500,000 girls in Kenya miss at least four days of school every month as they are unable to afford sanitary pads and do not always understand the changes their bodies are going through.
Always Brand manager, Ms. Ivy Kimani, says, “As a company we continue to invest in not just providing the girls with free sanitary pads but we go a step further and are now providing them with underwear as well as lifeskills through our mentorship program. This holistic approach we have found provides us with great results for example last year we ran the program in over 70 schools all of which reported zero pregnancies during that period.”
The Always Keeping Girls in School Program provides free sanitary towels to girls from underprivileged areas, it also focuses on educating these young girls about health issues, building their self-confidence and teaching them how to budget and save. The programme also engages the parents and teachers who are key stakeholders to ensure sustainability of the program.
“For the 10-year anniversary of the Always Keeping Girls in School Programme in June, we initiated our ‘Stand up and Keep a Girl in School’ campaign, where we encouraged Kenyans to purchase the Always Duo Packs. For each Duo Pack bought, Procter & Gamble would buy one pack for a girl at an underprivileged school. We are happy to announce that the campaign met our target and surpassed it- we had targeted 10,000 girls but now we will provide the puberty education and free pads to over 12,000 girls.” explains Ms Ivy Kimani.