Grant aeardes to Women’s Global Empowerment Fund (WGEF)

WGEF has been awarded a $25,000 grant. The Foundation is pleased to again partner with WGEF on their Healthy Periods Initiatives.
The mission of Women’s Global Empowerment Fund is to provide women with the framework necessary to
create viable opportunities for themselves and their families. Through grassroots strategies, marginalized
women are given the tools necessary to alleviate poverty, thus facilitating sustainable development and
empowerment.
To address the issue of menstrual health, and the challenges women face with regards to access, hygiene
and stigma while in refugee or IDP camps, Women’s Global Empowerment Fund (WGEF) has launched the
Menstruation Matters project, part of the Healthy Periods Initiative – improving health, creating
livelihoods. Because of inequality, gender taboos, and socio-cultural factors, menstrual health is overlooked. In many
refugee camps no regular supply of products is available. Due to the lack of access and affordability of
sanitary products, women and girls often use: cloth, leaves, mattress stuffing, and other ineffective and
unsafe materials. These materials are unhygienic, uncomfortable, ineffective and unacceptable.
As the world becomes more conflicted, increasing the numbers of people on the move, forced from their
homes and villages into camps and centers, the basic needs of women and girls are not met. One of the
worst refugee crisis is happening on the border of Uganda and S. Sudan. S. Sudanese people have been
forced to flee their homes due to increasing and brutal violence. Because WGEF is located in Gulu, northern
Uganda, these camps are on our doorstep and it became clear that we needed to help our neighbors.
In the refugee camps of Balore and Pagirinya, approximately 9000 women and girls have no access to
sanitary products. It has been over a year since any sanitary products have been delivered. This is unjust
and undignified. Menstruation Matters not only provides product but education on managing their periods,
in a safe and healthy way.
The funding requested will be used to manufacture 7000 pads per month, delivered to two refugee camps,
along with an educational component for the next 12 months. The requested funding will be spent monthly
over the next 12 months in Gulu, Uganda, and the northern region near the S. Sudanese border.
By providing funds for locally produced sanitary products, not only creates and supports local economies,
but will provide long term health benefits and education to women with few, if any, access to critical
resources around menstrual health. As the world is in conflict, this project supports sustainable
development and health benefits to those most in need.
WGEF is committed to providing women and girls living in nearby refugee camps access to this critical
product and education. All women deserve respect and to live with dignity, when women don’t have access
to relevant information or appropriate sanitary products, this is impossible.

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