Reduce the period’s shame that undermines the well-being of girls

Last week, I went with a team from Uganda Youth and Adolescents Health Forum to Progressive Secondary school, Kitintale for focused group discussions (books before babies campaign). We discussed a lot with students ranging from HIV/AIDS, Gender Equality, Menstruation management and more topics.

Truth be told, young people spend most of their valuable time at school. Schools pay a key role in shaping the character and grooming them to face the challenges of life

Back to the cause, adolescent have unique health challenges and they affect them differently depending on age, background, cultural beliefs among other factors and all these unique challenges require unique interventions

But I always scratch my head and wonder since when do parents have time to sit with their daughters and sons, Frankly, they’re missing the point and one of the things they don’t talk about when it comes to sexuality education, how it is important

It is true that education is critical to Uganda’s national development but can a country thrive without young people or can it thrive when they are unhealthy? The country should integrate sexual and reproductive health services regardless of the initial point of entry is critical in ensuring high quality, and effective services

A lot is being done to ensure that adolescents have safe lives, particularly through the already available policies such as the Adolescent Health policy but how far has it gone

We should all note that Uganda’s population is predominantly young with 52.4% under 16 years of age and these young people face a number of health challenges many which can be prevented

During the focused group discussions, Patricia Kisakye, a youth champion with Uganda Youth and Adolescents Health Forum said; that no girl should be stigmatized because she is in her menstrual but we have to give support, in terms of menstrual hygiene management, HIV, teenage pregnancy and early marriage

If there were ever a time to be reminded that we all need to help young people especially girls in this together, it would be now


Frank Byaruhanga is a human rights activist with years of experience in community dialogues, digital communication, advocacy and digital campaigns. He specializes in Media Relation Work, Management and Training with sufficient knowledge in Governance, Accountability, Sexual Reproductive Health and Rights, Youth-led research, Content developer, Creative Activism, Social Media Management and documentary photography.

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