What if lack of a feminine hygiene solution kept you in your room for Days?
No school for Days. No income for Days.
Celeste Mergens, founded Days for Girls in 2008. Mergens had been searching for years to know how to reverse the cycle of poverty and hunger when she came upon the idea of providing hygiene kits for girls in developing countries. As she was preparing to visit an orphanage in Uganda, she prayed to know how to help feed the children there. She told God she was ready to do anything required of her. After an evening of tears and pleading, she went to bed. At 2:30 in the morning, she awoke to a question: Celeste, have you asked the girls what they are doing for feminine hygiene? “They need food and water,” Celeste said as she related her experience, “Imagine receiving the answer, ‘Have you asked about feminine hygiene?’” She sat stunned, as she realized that this revelation was an undeniable answer to her prayers. Later she would realize that this was not only an answer to her prayer, but an answer to the prayers of women all over the world who were searching for a way out.
As Celeste talked to the girls in the orphanage about their needs, they were anxious to tell her of the difficulties they experienced. They had no resources available to them, unless they were willing to exploit themselves. When Celeste set out to fight poverty, she could not have imagined that these kits would allow many women and girls to attend school, have their own businesses, and avoid isolation, infection, and exploitation, which in turn has allowed them to gain the skills necessary to support themselves and their families. For the recipients of these hygiene kits, this means ending poverty in a very real way.
Along with hygiene kits, the girls receive education about their bodies and are trained how to make their own kits and educate others in their communities. It is an empowering experience for all who are involved. Opportunities for service have grown exponentially since Celeste’s prompting.
As Days for Girls has grown, chapters have opened across the country. The Utah Valley Chapter is the most active Days for Girls chapter in the world. They will be celebrating their one-year anniversary this November and have assembled over 7,000 kits in 11 months through a series of events held each week.
All Together Enterprises (OsoCozy/Cloth Diaper.Com) became affiliated with the Utah Valley Chapter of Days for Girls when they started donating scrap PUL to their cause. PUL provides a moisture proof/leak proof lining in each shield.
When Dennis Frederick, Owner of All Together Enterprises found out they were buying PUL at retail prices, he utilized his purchasing power to purchase on their behalf 100 yard rolls of PUL, cutting their cost by 40-50% enabling them to do more with their limited funding. “This is one of the neatest projects we have been affiliated with,” commented Dennis. “Empowering women is the key to economic development and the reduction of poverty in Africa. Days for Girls is providing a truly meaningful gift for these young women.”
Thanks to a global grassroots network of thousands of volunteers and supporters, Days for Girls have reached women and girls in 75 countries on 6 continents.
It’s working. You can help them reach the rest. http://daysforgirls.org
The kits consist of:
1 Drawstring Bag (Poly-cotton & twill tape)
2 Moisture Barrier Shields (Flannel & PUL)
2 One-Gallon size Ziplock Bags
8 Absorbent tri-fold pads (Flannel)
1 Pair of Panties
1 Travel sized Soap
1 Visual Instruction Sheet