Did you know that 1 in 10 girls in South Africa misses school due to a lack of access to sanitary pads? By being on her period, 1 in 10 girls will stay at home and from the shadows, watch life in all its glory passing her by due to the inaccessibility of something so readily available as sanitary pads. For these young girls (who grow up to be women, still stuck in the same cycle) the adverse poverty is one riddled with heartache and shame as scarves, cut-out old t-shirts, toilet paper and newspapers are some of the only, inadequate, but accessible alternatives. Now think about it; the one thing which makes us women the creative forces we are, the unique part of us which allows us to nurture, carry and birth life is more of a burden, a hindrance for many young girls and women, robbing them of their lives. That’s not right! And can you imagine the damage it does to how a young woman views not just herself, but the women around her, women in general and their place in society? Imagine the sense of inadequacy and how the powerlessness filters in to her every day life! What about the adverse effects this has on the economy as these women are basically disqualified from being active contributing members of society. The ripple effects are so many, so vast and so dire that something has to be done. Luckily, that something is being done and you and I can certainly contribute towards doing more. We can be the answer to prayer for so many young girls and women across South Africa and even beyond.
The answer is the Dear Bella movement! Through their many initiatives, young girls are taught and empowered to function and contribute towards society, confidently and fearlessly, no matter the time of the month.
I first learnt of their endeavors via BrownSense and boy did I get excited! The amazing woman, heart and compassion behind the Dear Bella Movement only seeks to make sure that girls who can’t afford sanitary pads, get them FREE of charge, every month, but I wonder, does she truly comprehend just how much of an impact her dream and passion will make all over the world as we choose to walk this walk with her [side note: this is why local businesses are our obsession, the heart and humanity behind each product and community focused service]? And, might I add, she clearly doesn’t do what she does for the fame because finding out who she was took a minute. I mean I had to develop some Johnny English detective skills overnight just to find what her full name was which wasn’t really hard as I already had a tiny bit of Johnny English within me lol, all jokes aside, that just makes me love and appreciate you the more Matefo.
Does this not solidify why supporting local businesses isn’t just a good thing to do, but an urgent need? The answer is yes, a definite yes! Dear Bella not only allows affordable access to good quality sanitary towels, but they’ve made it so easy for you and I to participate that really, why wouldn’t you? For every pack of sanitary pads sold, Dear Bella gives one free pack to a girl child in need (now I can’t find that info on their site [maybe Johnny wore off], but their paid feature on BrownSense says so and that’s good enough for me). They also visit schools, educating and empowering girls on feminine hygiene, giving them all the tools needed during their changing and new phase of life. Whether it be in groups or 1 on 1 sessions, they have our young ladies covered and we love it! Man is that not lit?!
Other ways of getting involved include:
- You can become a volunteer Impact Maker through their Impact Makers Pragramme. This allows you to voluntarily educate your community, friends and family about the plight of the girl child with no access to sanitary pads and feminine hygiene.
- You can sponsor a girl with R99 pm ensuring that not just 1, but 7 girls receive sanitary pads every month. Can I get a WHOOP WHOOP!
- Lastly, as mentioned before, by just purchasing sanitary pads for yourself, Dear Bella will make sure that a young girl is getting one pack too and it’s FREE, on you. Look at you! #bigsis
It’s that simple. I mean like, if that’s not hero levels then I don’t know what is. Please check them out and support them as best as you can.
Ps: Do unto others as you would have them do unto you (Luke 6:31). Be their answer to prayer!
xoxo (via social distance)
(Founder and CEO @HOODZ_Africa aka I like literally just work here)