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Local Pastor Inspired to Provide Sanitary Pads After Youth Conference

MZUZU, MALAWI (May 31, 2024) – A youth conference in Mzuzu last month has sparked an initiative by a local pastor to help address menstrual hygiene challenges facing secondary school girls in the region.

Pastor Mwiza Nyirenda of Fountain of Victory Ministries was inspired after hearing two DRP-trained youth reporters, Sera Kumwenda and Pemphero Luhanga, speak about the issue of menstrual hygiene at the April 27th conference. The pair had recently covered the topic on their weekly radio program on Voice of Livingstonia after reading about it in the DRP Weekly Bulletin.

"Their presentation really opened my eyes to the difficulties many young girls face in properly managing their periods while trying to attend school," said Pastor Nyirenda. "I knew our church had to take action."

Beginning on May 8th, Fountain of Victory Ministries launched a program to provide reusable sanitary pads to four secondary schools in the area – Mchengautuwa, Zolozozolo, Mzuzu Government School and Masambiro Private Secondary School.

"We have come up with this plan to distribute the pads in these four schools where there are also Youth Ladies Clubs," Pastor Nyirenda explained. "This will complement the efforts of the girls in the DRP-funded Titchile Radio Listening Club who have been raising awareness about menstrual hygiene through radio programs."

Lack of access to affordable feminine hygiene products is a major contributor to absenteeism and dropout rates among girls in many parts of Malawi.

Initiatives like this one aim to remove that barrier and allow all students to attend school consistently. The pastor hopes other churches, organizations and individuals will be inspired to take similar actions to support girls' education and health across the country.


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