Spar Botswana paired with the Ministry of Health and Wellness at the Spar Village on Wednesday to donate 5,746 sanitary pads to primary schools.
The two partnered for this initiative to provide for over 1,400 schoolgirls countrywide. When delivering her speech, the Spar Botswana human resource manager, Elizabeth Leepile said Spar Botswana contributed precious ideas to make the donation a success.
“The Ministry of Health provided us with a list of 15 primary schools that will benefit from this programme. This is not the first time Spar Botswana has extended help to the community. The company also adhered to the pillars of Vision 2016 of a compassionate, just and caring nation, as well as the sustainable development goals. Spar has done this exercise just for the sake of creating a feeling of gratitude, compassion, humanity and a sense of appreciation,” she said.
She added that giving encourages a culture of giving without expecting something in return.
“Statistics from UNICEF indicate that an estimate of one out of four girls misses school every month. Sanitary Pads play a vigorous role in the life of the girl child. As you know in other cultures, menstruation is offensive and with this girls are faced with such challenges and obstacles that not only affect them socially but also academically.
“Many girls struggle to access sanitary pads hence the provision of them in schools. This is obviously becoming a challenge to the academic work of students as it results in them being absent. There is no doubt that girls who remain in schools will receive education on menstruation and the hygiene that comes with it,” Leepile said.
One of the beneficiaries of the programme, Rankoa Primary School told Mmegi that donation is a noble one. The school head, Edwin Odiseng said this
Thembani Popo, a representative from Leporung Primary School said they were thankful, as it was the first time they received such a gift. “This gesture will restore dignity in the girl-child and it will also provide a good learning experience conducive to them (even while in their menses),” she said.
A guidance and counselling teacher at Ngware Primary School, Kemoneilwe Tshweneyame said cases of students accidentally staining their school uniforms, getting embarrassed in the process, were rife. As a result the stundents will be sent home at the expense of their schooling.
“Some parents find it difficult to buy their daughters sanitary pads so this gift will curb such situations.” Sanitary pads play a big role in the lives of girls, and each school received a total of 638 pads.
Some of the schools that received the sanitary pads were Leporung, Ralekgetho, Kokong, Sesung, Mahusane, Rankoa, Sojwe, Maboane and Ngware.
Spar Botswana extended the same donation to schools in the North East with Senyawe Primary School benefiting a total of 636 pads. In the Central district, Thalogang and Moiyabana Primary schools each obtained 808 pads. Spar Botswana’s journey will end in the North West and Kgalagadi where D’kar, K’joe and Etsha Primary schools with each getting 234 pads. After completing with their journey across primary schools Spar Botswana will await a list of Secondary Schools to benefit from the ministry.