Teachers in Busoga sub-region are undergoing training in making reusable sanitary pads to help girls stay in school.
Alice Kagoda, the chairperson of the board of governors of Bishop Willis Core Primary Teachers College, Iganga, said the training has so far covered eight primary schools in Jinja district.
“Working with development partners, we pioneered the project in Jinja due to the alarming rate of girls dropping out of school. Many girls were also being lured by men under the guise of buying for them sanitary towels,” Kagoda said.
“Casual labourers give the girls sh2,000 for pads.”
She said about three out of every 10 girls in Busoga fail to return to school at the beginning of a new term due to the onset of puberty-related matters.
Jane Otukol, the principal of Bishop Willis Core Primary Teachers College, said the institution had been earmarked to handle the training of teachers in making pads, before rolling out the exercise to other teachers colleges in the country.
“Last week, we passed out 251 tutors with the capacity to train other teachers. The idea is that teachers can be a good resource to spread the gospel of self-reliance when it comes to sanitary pads,” Otukol said.
Henry Kabulo, the Bugiri district education officer, lauded the initiative, saying it IGANGA would boost school attendance in the sub-region.
“Some families cannot afford sh3,000 for food daily. How do you expect such people to set aside about sh4,000 per month for two packs of sanitary towels?” Kabulo asked.
He noted that whenever some girls start menstruating, they do not go to school due to lack of sanitary towels and washrooms for changing. Patrick Kayemba, the Iganga district chairperson, welcomed the training, which he described as timely.
“In this era of gender equality, we need to put arrangements in place to avoid male domination. If what prevents more girls from being in class is addressed, then it is a step in the right direction,” Kayemba said.