No stigma, no shame

12 July 2019 | Education

Sofia Hamunyela

Mensuration is known to be the flow of blood from a woman’s vagina; this is not because she is sick but it is a sign to show forth that she is healthy and is not pregnant #African pregnancy test.

Khomastura High School celebrated world menstrual week under the theme “No stigma, No shame” from 22 May - 28 May 2019. The celebration took place at the school, whereby a performance was staged by the Resilient Girls and the Wilderness Boys in a form a role play which aimed to teach girls on how to maintain hygiene during their menstrual cycle and also to educate boys that it is not a laughing matter but rather a time where they need to understand and try to help girls. Some learners who were interviewed by the school’s editorial team said the message was clear and educational, they also said most parents do not share such information as it is a ” Taboo” in some household, it is not at all a topic for dining table but simply between women and it not for male ears.

On the 28 May 2019, about 35 schools from the Khomas region attended the first-ever event in Southern African Development Community (SADC), that celebrated the menstrual week, there was also a march which was organised by the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF). The march was from Soweto, Katutura to A. Shipena Secondary School where the celebration began. Learners were offered refreshments before the program. The program featured a few speakers including the Khomas regional governor madam Laura McLeod Katjirua who addressed the meeting and said “We must be proud of our periods (mensuration) for it is not a sickness but a blessing from God and children learn best when healthy. Most girls utilise other things like toilet papers or tissues instead of sanitary pads, tissues are not suitable and safe as they can cause infections. Girls tend to stay away from school on an average of 3 days each month while others leave school. Boys and men must be taught about menstruation and also to stop the stigma against teenage pregnancy, HIV and STDS.”

One of the learners from A. Shipena Secondary School mentioned that girls must not be ashamed of their periods and that they should seek help from a person that they trust and also encouraged them that “do not let mensuration get the best of you.

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