Out of the Shade: Celebrating Menstrual Health

Last month we shared the plans the PWW Honduras team had in place to celebrate International Menstrual Hygiene Day in May. The event, called Out of the Shade, was to be held at a local Trojes school. The goal was to gather girls and families together, bringing their old umbrellas to be used for handcrafting re-usable sanitary pads. The PWW team would be sewing pads with the mothers of fifth and sixth grade girls. Additionally, there would be an educational component of the program, teaching the girls and parents what to do before and during menstruation.

Maria Regina Inestroza Mejia, PWW Country Directory, Honduras, shares the story about how the successful event unfolded:

“What we had planned for one day was extended to a week of celebration!”





It began Friday, May 18th with the initial “Out of the Shade” event. Then, in another small community, El Sinar, one of the teachers asked us to train all of  the girls on how to make the pads out of umbrellas as well. In another school, called Las Colinas, in downtown Trojes, the teachers organized something similar and called us to help them with their activity, too. Four hundred children, 12 teachers, and about 100 parents participated in the events. It was a total success!!

The full community of Trojes found out there was an international day for menstruation and giggled a little at first. But, soon, they were asking all sorts of questions about menstruation too!

Boys learning about puberty, too.

Every girl who participated received an emergency kit to be prepared for when their first menstruation happens. They were also educated to understand what’s going on with their bodies at that stage of their life, including the boys!

Making the menstrual hygiene pads was an awesome way to reuse broken umbrellas and avoid contamination of the environment. Now, they are empowered to make their own pads and help other schools get started!

The teachers mentioned that some of the girls had been taught by their moms that having their menstrual cycle was being sick, and that is why the girls thought they should stay at home during this time. But now they know better!