Reporting on concerted efforts to make life better for women and girls, month after month
In recent years the topic MHM (menstrual hygiene management) has steadily gained in momentum in Nepal. The report ‘Nepal’s Menstrual Movement’ documents the inspiring and courageous work of local initiatives and development organisations who managed to break the silence on this issue and to get Nepal’s government to take action.
In Nepal, entrenched cultural and religious beliefs make managing their menstruation extremely difficult for millions of women and girls, which has negative impacts on their health, education and human rights. This report, which was launched in parallel in Berlin and Kathmandu on May 28, 2019, describes these challenges as well as the considerable progress Nepal has made in the last few years to address them.
‘If you want to get a good overview of the many MHM-related activities underway in Nepal, you should read this report’ says Valerie Broch Alvarez, Senior Technical Advisor, Support to the Nepali-German Health Sector Programme. ‘It shows how the power of collective action has begun to transform women’s and girls’ lives.’
While MHM used to be a taboo subject until a short time ago, the ‘menstrual movement’ and MHM are now high on the agenda of many development initiatives. From a handful of initiatives who worked on MHM a few years ago, the number rose to more than 50 different public, private, government and NGO organisations implementing more than 80 different MHM-related projects. Today, Nepal’s MHM Practitioner Alliance coordinates this work, enabling members to share experiences and information and to continue to drive the menstrual health and hygiene agenda forward.
It may be a result of this work that on May 3rd 2019 the Nepali government announced that all Nepali schoolgirls will have access to free sanitary pads at school.