Author: Sarika GuptaFounder - Safe N' Happy Periods Co-Founder & Trustee - Aegis School of Business & Data Science

Saturday 27, 2018
At IIT Bombay, Powai Campus

Safe N Happy Periods is invited at AEVENUES, IIT Bombay Campus for a positive discussion on Menstruation. Also there is a Sanitary Pad donation drive where you can donate Pads.

AEVENUES is an International Business festival of IIT Bombay, organized by Shailesh J. Mehta School of Management.

We invite you to join as a participant/ volunteer/ donor of Sanitary Pads.

Friday 26, 2018
At VDIS School of Mantally Challenged
Juhu, Mumbai

Thanks to ARUNIMA for this opportunity. We will be distributing sanitary pads to the girls of VDIS. Anybody who wants to donate pads are welcome. They can contact us or give the pads directly to Arunima or VDIS.

It is important to be at peace with yourself. It is important to feel confident in your own body. Most of all, it is really important not to be ashamed of something you are biologically programmed to have.

Upon my arrival in India, I learned a lot about its food, its culture, and some of its traditions. But I have to say, I was really surprised to learn how menstruation was perceived. For me and my friends, having our first periods was something to be proud of. Yes, it wasn’t something you publically announced but it was definitely not something to be ashamed of either.

By being a part of SNHP, I got a chance to observe and be in contact with women from various age groups and backgrounds. Seeing their reactions to what Sarika told them about menstruation, was eye-opening. I realized just how much I have taken my knowledge for granted: knowledge about my own biology, about menstrual hygiene and about pain-relief.

SNHP, in a way, helps these women and girls to embrace themselves and get rid of negative emotions surrounding this natural phenomenon via education. An education many don’t receive because most women are too shy to talk about it even with their daughters.

I had a great time working with Sarika and the other volunteers. I am so grateful for everything I’ve learned and experienced. It has been an unforgettable journey and while I’m sad I could only be a part of it for six weeks, I’m looking forward to seeing what SNHP achieves in the future.

Yasemin Daldal from Istanbul, Turkey
Andressa Grechi from Brazil

Being a volunteer on Safe N’ Happy Periods helped me to understand the reality of Indian women. The use of pads and tampons during the menstrual periods, considered common in other countries, it’s still a hot topic in India.

Many women still do not know how to use pads or the correct way to disposal it, they are shy and do not feel comfortable talking about periods. A topic considered so natural for me and spoke so freely in my country can become a nightmare for women in India.

Safe N’ Happy Periods do not just spread awareness, it changes lives. It changes the way women in India see themselves and make them be more confident, independent and proud about their bodies.

Check her video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XqeDfJ1wvao

A Chartered Accountant

Assistant Manager – Finance department of Bunge India.

 

I have been volunteering with SNHP and I’m happy to be a part of an initiative that is spreading awareness about an important issue in India. I like doing yoga too and I believe that teaching yoga asanas to relieve period pain is very effective.

Ruchika Khemka
Rebecca from UK

 I was enrolled in a 6 week women empowerment project called ‘Project Mulan’, of which 2 weeks were spent with Safe N’ Happy Periods. However, after the 2 weeks had finished, I made the decision to stay with this non-profit for the full duration of my time in India. I feel that this NGO is making a tangible impact on society – as well as distributing pads people have donated, the workshops themselves are invaluable for raising the confidence of young girls, reducing shame and preventing infection through unsafe hygiene practices and misinformation. The true impact from this non-profit is immeasurable, and there is no counting how many girls still think about Sarika Gupta’s workshop or use the yoga asanas on a monthly basis.

I feel passionate about helping to spread the message about this initiative and contribute to their work, especially having attended a workshop and seen how warmly welcomed and productive they are. As someone who has found themselves on unproductive volunteering programmes in the past, which are designed just to entertain the volunteer, I was able to recognize this project as one that is really worth my time and energy.

As a girl, I was always interested in women empowerment and fighting

for girls’ rights. I wondered why there are a lot of girls who are shy because of their bodies. I also felt sorry for those who can’t do whatever they want to do, study the thing that they are interested in and travel to places they want to visit and the reason of all that is that they are girls!!!

I went to India to work with a non-governmental organization called Safe N’ Happy Periods. This organization works to create awareness about monthly periods, to educate girls about their bodies, about hygiene, about what they can do and why they shouldn’t be ashamed of their bodies. This is important because in India there are a lot of girls who feel ashamed and uncomfortable about their periods although it is such a natural thing. We often say women empowerment is a must, but how can we empower women who have problems with understanding their bodies and their period. I then realized that the work of Safe N’ Happy Periods is a great first step for the sake of real women empowerment.

 

 

Aya from Egypt
Workshop at Kamathipura, for girls and women associated with the NGO Oasis India

“Safe N’ Happy Periods” was invited by Rave Technologies India Pvt. Ltd. (an IT software and services company based in Worli, Mumbai) to conduct a short workshop as part of their Women’s Day initiative for social awareness.

The workshop was held at Kamathipura, for girls and women associated with the NGO Oasis India. Oasis India is an NGO who work for the betterment of underprivileged women and children. At their Kamathipura centre they are involved in providing safe shelter and homes for children in an unsafe environment, engage them in after-school education and activities and help them find appropriate employment. This way they help girl victims of human trafficking and daughters of the sex workers in Kamathipura to achieve a bright future.

The workshop went very well. The girls and women were very interested and listened carefully. They learned about the biological importance of menstruation, the right menstrual hygiene practices, the different sanitary products they could use and the right way to dispose sanitary napkins. Besides this, they learned ways to reduce pain through yoga and the need to discard superstitions and myths surrounding menstruation. Educating these girls and women about the importance of menstruation and menstrual hygiene is all the more important as most have not had access to the right information and resources, until now. This workshop provided them with vital information, while also helping them to feel more secure about their menstrual cycles and bodies, which is an important step to empowerment.

We were very happy to conduct this informative interactive session for these girls and women. This workshop has been an exciting and inspiring event for both the attending girls as well as for us and our international volunteers. We hope to work with Oasis India and Rave Technologies in the future to reach even more girls and women in the same situation.

My first hand experience with Safe N’ Happy Periods took place in the Global Village, an AIESEC event where a lot of students from different countries all over the world come together to share their culture and experiences.  This year it was organized at the Pillai College of Navi Mumbai, and Dorian (another volunteer from China) and I had the opportunity to set up a stand for SNHP and represent the NGO in front of the students who attended the event. In the previous weeks we had worked in the office, doing researches, updating databases, planning visits to schools and colleges; at the Global Village we had the chance to meet students and talk to them about our experience of volunteering for SNHP, sharing our opinions about menstruation related issues and showing them the activities done so far by the NGO. I was impressed by the interest showed by the majority of the girls I talked with, they were aware of the importance of improving menstrual awareness among young girls and they strongly supported our cause. It’s clear that these girls want to change traditional perspectives about periods, they really want to talk about it shame-less and freely, while there were some guys who felt uncomfortable when I asked them some questions about this topic. Then I realized how much work is still needed to reach a real shame-free menstruation time for every woman in the world. In my opinion SNHP is a significant starting point to achieve this goal, a push to change mentalities and behaviors. It’s up to everyone let women to live happily their periods; I’m glad to have the opportunity to give my contribution to a cause I strongly believe in.

Clementine Udine from Italy