Our School Education Program
In India, about 71% of the girls do not know about the how and why of periods, when they get their first period. This is the situation on awareness in the country right now and it was way more dire when Whisper was launched in 1989. Awareness has always been and continues to be one of the biggest barriers to adoption of hygienic MHM practices in the country today.
A lack of awareness leads to girls having no prior information about periods before they experience them for the first time and being caught completely unawares. Also, owing to a lack of awareness, they do not prioritize it as an essential health need. Even when we talk about affordability, the big question is about relevance – mothers and daughters think that a sanitary pad is a good-to-have rather than a necessity. As a result, household spending on essential menstrual hygiene is just a small fraction of what is spent on other items, such as cosmetics.
We realised that being the market leaders & pioneers in the field of female hygiene in the country the onus falls upon us to take up the mantel & drive awareness about periods among young girl sin the country. Hence, we have been conducting a unique program exclusively for girls to educate them and make them understand the importance of Health & Hygiene especially during menstruation. We have been running this program successfully for the past 25 years with the active support of schools across India.
The aim of this program is to help girls understand the changes they experience during puberty and acknowledge that these changes are a normal part of growth and development. It also aims to teach the girls about best practices in hygiene that can her here manage her period better. We started with a few hundred girls in the 90s and today we reach over 60 lakh girls every year through this program and are able to create a positive impact in her life.
We make a conscious effort to involve the mothers as a part of the program as well, because we feel that a mother is the biggest influencer in the life of a young girl. It is important that a girl retains whatever she learns in our workshops and applies the same in real life, for which a reinforcement of the same at home becomes very necessary. Hence involving the mother ensures that the same message is repeated to the girls at home and they adopt hygienic MHM practices right from menarche.
Even during the COVID-19 pandemic, despite the schools being shut-down, we remained true to our mission and realised the need to continue to reach out to and educate school girls about periods and teach them the importance of hygienic protection on period days. To deliver the same we revamped our program and conducted it over Video Calls and other digital platforms during the lockdown while schools remain closed.
The Mother-Daughter education program is a project we are extremely passionate about and one of the biggest pillars for our brand. We tirelessly strive to create a meaningful impact in the lives of Indian girls & women and this program goes a huge way in helping us achieve that. With this program, we aim to help the girls realise that periods are nothing to be ashamed off and that period days should never come in the way of achieving their goals or living her life to the fullest.