Centre for Gender and Community Development in Zimbabwe in partnership with Vasikana Project recently donated sanitary pads and menstrual hygiene text books to Mbetu villagers in rural Masvingo.
The event, which was hosted at a vegetable garden in Mbetu village under Chief Charumbira, saw young women and girls receiving menstrual health books made especially for those who find it difficult to get menstrual health advice from their parents or guardians.
CGCDZ projects manager Chida Mudadi said they collaborated with Vasikana because they are all gender based organizations who focus on women and girls.
"We collaborated with Vasikana because we are all gender based organizations and we focus with women.
"We wish to continue working with Vasikana so that we empower young girls and women on Menstrual Health Management," said Chida.
Speaking at the event Vasikana project Director Honesty Mamutse said he chose the rural community because they are the ones that are underprivileged, with no income generating projects.
"We chose the rural communities because they are the ones that are underprivileged and there are no income generating projects in rural areas.
"We want to empower girls so that they are aware of their bodies and their rights to make sure that they will not get married without their consent," said Mamutse.
One of the beneficiaries Ngonidzashe Ponde said the donated pads will help her a lot as she is not given money for sanitary wear by their parents since pads are very expensive and they end up using cloths which give them infections sometimes.
"We are very fortunate that we were given sanitary pads which our parents cannot afford in the rural areas," said Ponde.
A teacher from Mafuga Primary School Karai Makoho said the book is very useful since it imparts knowledge that the girls were not getting from their parents.
"These books are going to be very useful in imparting knowledge to young girls of Mbetu village since their parents are not teaching them on how to handle menstruation and I urge girls to share the information with their mates," said Makoho.
Constance Njerenje, a young woman from the area however raised her concern about lack of concern by parents on menstrual health issues because the cost of living is too high.
"As young parents we cannot afford to buy sanitary pads for ourselves and our young girls because they are expensive, so we prioritize buying sugar instead of sanitary pads.
"We also urge Vasikana project to also donate panties for our young girls since they do not have anywhere to put their pads," said Njerenje.
Vasikana project started in 2014 and is aimed at empowering girls by providing puberty education and safe dignified ways for young girls to manage their periods.