Oshwal Academy Nairobi Junior High students raise money to keep girls in school
Oshwal Academy Nairobi students have raised over half a million shillings to support girls by keeping them in school. The Ksh742,000 mobilised by Junior High students at Oshwal Academy Nairobi has been channelled through the African Girl Foundation to support over 400 girls with sanitary towels.
The African Girl Foundation gets reusable sanitary towels and supplies them to girls who lack finances to access the essential materials during their menstrual period. This forces some to stay away from school during this period, while others use unhygienic methods that expose them to infections.
“We are very proud of our students and were stunned when they raised so much for fellow students. Every child deserves an opportunity to stay in school and indeed the poverty cycle in Kenya can be broken when we educate girls,” said Mrs Savita Kulkarni, the co-curricular coordinator who led the campaign.
The school started fundraising in October, led by Sister-to-Sister Group, a team of young girls at the school who have been running a project to provide sanitary towels to girls in schools around Nairobi.
The African Girl Foundation presented a platform for Oshwal Academy to help out on a larger scale, said Pratibha Gupta, team leader of the Sister-to-Sister group. The campaign also raised 200 packets of sanitary towels that were delivered to a girls’ school in Kangemi.
The African Girl Foundation was started in 2014 and has so far benefited over 600 girls in different regions across the country, including Kajiado, Nakuru and Nairobi.
One in 10 girls in Africa drops out of school due to lack of sanitary towels, according to the UNICEF, while 65 percent of girls cannot afford sanitary pads. “This situation places girls at a disadvantage, especially now that it derails their education. We want to ensure girls across the country are able to attend school and pursue their dreams,”said Rajeev Sharma of the African Girl Foundation during a function to recognize highest fundraisers at Oshwal Academy.
The Foundation intends to use the donation from Oshwal students to support 400 girls at Arutani School in Nakuru in January 2017 when schools reopen. The African Child Foundation uses the Malaika Kit, which has four reusable sanitary pads that last a year.