BHUBANESWAR: Geetanjali Marndi, a Class 10 student of Kapilas Girls’ High School in Dhenkanal, represented Odisha at the ‘Niine Movement’s Menstrual Awareness Conclave’ in New Delhi on Monday on the occasion of Menstrual Hygiene Day. During the event, Geetanjali joined Deputy Director Asia Pacific regional office, United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), Jennifer Butler, in the panel focusing on absenteeism of girl child in schools due to menstruation.
The Odisha girl shared with stage with other high profile dignitaries including, actor and social activist Shabana Azmi. Geetanjali also had the opportunity to interact with Bollywood superstar Akshay Kumar, who was the chief guest of the conclave. An inspiring change-maker at 15, Geetanjali was nominated for the conclave by ST and SC Development department.
She studies in the residential school run by ST and SC Development department and has set an example for many other girls like her by breaking the myths and misconceptions associated with menstruation.
Speaking at the conclave, Geetanjali said Life Skills Education classes in her school helped her understand that menstruation was normal for girls and how wrong believes and unhealthy practices affect self esteem and dignity of girls. She said provision of sanitary pads in schools along with the life skills education changed the way girls managed their menstruation.
Awareness camp on menstrual hygiene
Bhubaneswar:The City authorities on Monday organised a special workshop ‘Asantu Katha Heba’ (come let us talk) at Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation office here on the occasion of Menstrual Hygiene Day. Over 100 girls of Bhubaneswar Town Centre District slums, ASHA workers, officials of Bhubaneswar Smart City Limited, BMC, and volunteers of social organisation Humara Bachpan were present. The workshop was organised under Socially Smart Bhubaneswar programme by BSCL and BMC in collaboration with United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) India.
The officials stated that the aim of the workshop was to create awareness and educate adolescent girls residing in urban slums on menstrual health and hygiene so that they learn about the safe and healthy practice. Obstetric and gynaecology specialist of Unit IV Government hospital Dr Reetanjali Mishra conducted the workshop and briefed the girls about menstrual hygiene and its impact on the health. Mishra pointed that that lack of physical activities was the reason behind about 60 per cent girls not having regular cycles.
The doctor advised the participants for giving importance to physical activities in their daily routine, and also suggested to eat lot of green vegetables as well as iron and folic acid tablets, keeping in mind that on an average 50 ml of blood is lost during every menstrual cycle. Addressing the participants, consultant to Government of Odisha’s ST and SC department, Dr Chayanika Mishra, urged the girls for shunning shyness. A special menstruation hygiene kit consisting of a poster, a brochure describing menstruation health and hygiene, a sanitary towel, sanitary napkin, a bottle of liquid sanitary wash and other items were presented to the participants. BMC Zonal Deputy Commissioner (South-East) Binaya K Dash and BSCL general manager (operation) Bijay K Swain were present at the event.