"All my bags are packed I'm ready to go..." That's the song that's going through our heads at the end of this year as we prepare for the program launch in February! Three team members from Days for Girls International are headed to Tripoli and Saida, Lebanon in February to conduct the training of trainers program with Mercy Corps that will officially kickstart two Enterprises at refugee youth centers. This has been many months in the making, requiring collaboration and cooperation from team members across the globe to map out supply chain, customize and translate training materials, identify project sites, and agree on high-impact deliverables.
The training of trainers will equip partners at the youth center to conduct DfG Kit distributions, sew & sell DfG Kits locally, and provide women's health education in their communities. With access to a washable, reusable solution, families can save money and girls & women will be able to utilize a sanitary solution they can rely on month after month. Recent follow up data from Kenya showed that one-year post-distribution, 87% of girls were still using their DfG Kits to manage their menstruation. Additional research from Lebanon shows a strong interest in washable pads among mothers and younger teens (with older teens requiring additional education to be convinced). Our wonderful partners at Mercy Corps conducted a basic needs assessment on menstrual hygiene and couldn't wait to get this solution to their centers.
Not only is this an exciting project in and of itself, but it also has tremendous meaning for the menstrual hygiene movement in the region. The support from GlobalGiving means that, for the first time in Days for Girls history, we will have a permanent presence in the Middle East, providing the ability to reach girls & women across the region! In the past year alone, Days for Girls International has received DfG Kit requests from individuals and groups in Lebanon, Jordan, Syria, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, and so many other countries. A presence in Lebanon means increased opportunities to meet these needs. And that is something to celebrate!