A New Initiative in West Bengal Addresses Dual Needs for Economic Opportunity and Reproductive Health Education for Women in Underserved Rural Villages
A New Initiative in West Bengal Addresses Dual Needs
Yoga Gives Back (YGB) has launched their pad machine program together with NGO partner NISHTHA in West Bengal, supported by the nonprofit organization The Pad Project and the Trotula Fund. This pioneering initiative kicked off with the installation of two pad manufacturing machines to train 20 women in YGB’s micro-loan business program, Sister Aid.
Many women and girls in India cannot afford to use sanitary menstrual products, which makes them susceptible to gynecological diseases. Without proper sanitary supplies, they may resort to using newspapers, dirty rags, and even leaves to manage their periods. “When girls and women have access to safe and affordable sanitary materials to manage their menstruation, they decrease their risk of infections.This can have cascading effects on overall sexual and reproductive health, including reducing teen pregnancy, maternal outcomes, and fertility. Poor menstrual hygiene, however, can pose serious health risks, like reproductive and urinary tract infections which can result in future infertility and birth complications.” (Source: Brief, May 12, 2022, WorldBank)
YGB’s goal is to provide women and girls with affordable, biodegradable, high-quality menstrual products paired with education on health and hygiene, as well as to create a source of income for women in the Sister Aid program. This project will empower users of pad products as well as producers of pads in poor villages. YGB believes this project’s initial success could become the foundation from which they can roll out similar projects in nearby communities, and they hope to achieve greater impact with any assistance and opportunities that arise from the project launch. Find out more about YBG’s pad machine program here: https://yogagivesback.org/the-pad-project/.
Yoga Gives Back (YGB) celebrates 15 years of impact empowering women and girls in India with education and economic opportunities for a better future. YGB is a grassroots nonprofit organization founded by Kayoko Mitsumasu in Los Angeles in 2006. Today, 150 yoga teachers and leaders are known as YGB Ambassadors who share its mission and raise funds within their communities. YGB works closely with NGO partners (Non-Governmental Organizations) in Karnataka and West Bengal, India, to carry out and grow its programs. Donations empower women and children with basic education, scholarships for higher education, micro-loans for businesses, and the ultimate opportunity to transform their lives and villages.