Micato Musings


Posts Tagged ‘reusable sanitary napkins’

An Easy Way to Help Kenyan Girls Live Better Lives

  • October 20th 2011

868,000 Kenyan girls miss nearly a week of school each month because they can’t afford to buy sanitary pads.

Appalled at this number, Lorna Macleod, the executive director of Micato Safaris’ nonprofit arm, Micato-AmericaShare, founded a separate non-profit focused on getting sanitary products to girls who need them most. This program not only keeps at-risk girls in school, it also helps protect them from predation and sexual diseases. Thus Huru International was born.

That was in 2008, and Huru has been distributing kits containing reusable sanitary pads to girls in Kenya ever since, having put Huru Kits in the hands of over 20,000 girls. The kits are manufactured at a workshop based in the Micato-AmericaShare Harambee Centre, which is staffed by members of the community.  Huru Kits are distributed throughout Kenya with the assistance of more than 30 local partners. Kits are delivered through school-based information sharing events, which engage girls in discussions and activities focused on HIV prevention. In just three short years, Huru has found partnerships with many well-respected organizations, including Johnson & Johnson, the Elton John AIDS Foundation, and the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief, among others.

Most recently Huru has partnered with the o.b. Brand on a Share-it-Forward campaign with the potential to raise $25,000 for Huru. To put that number in perspective, for every $25 donated, Huru can supply one girl with all the sanitary supplies (including underwear, reusable pads, soap and even life-saving HIV/AIDS prevention information) that she’ll need for between one and two years.

It’s a simple campaign—from now through December 5th, anyone who “likes” the o.b. Brand Facebook page may share a message about Huru’s mission with all their Facebook friends at Facebook.com/obmightysmall. For every individual that shares the message, o.b. will donate $1 to Huru. If the donation goal is reached, that means that 1,000 more young girls will be given the gift of education, safety and hope.

115 million children worldwide aren’t getting an education. Most of them are girls. Isn’t it time to Share It Forward?

Micato’s Charitable Work featured in The New York Times

  • February 18th 2010

Micato’s nonprofit arm, AmericaShare, is at the forefront of a life-changing initiative in Africa—and it appears The New York Times has taken notice!

Tuesday’s New York Times featured an article about one of our projects designed to keep African girls in school every day of the month. The project is the creation of reusable sanitary napkins for impoverished girls in the slums. An unfortunate reality is that school-age girls typically miss one week of school each month when menstruating since disposable sanitary napkins are beyond the reach of poor families.

The Micato-AmericaShare Harambee Centre is the headquarters for this remarkable project. Washable and reusable sanitary napkins are being sewn by our women’s group and packaged into kits that include eight pads, three pair of underwear, washing soap, plastic storage bags and a pamphlet about safe sex and HIV/AIDS.  These kits are being distributed free of charge to girls via the Kenyan Girl Guide Association. The expectation is that this project will be replicated throughout Africa at other community centers serving impoverished populations.

The project was launched by Huru International, an organization that was founded by Micato’s own Lorna MacLeod, the executive director of AmericaShare. The word ‘Huru’ means ‘freedom’ in Swahili and the organization’s mission is to empower girls by providing them with the knowledge and resources they need to develop into healthy, economically secure women.  Huru International’s partners are the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief, the Elton John AIDS Foundation, Johnson & Johnson and Warner Brothers, amongst others.

All of us at Micato are immensely proud of our involvement in this meaningful endeavour.  We hope you will take a moment and read all about it.