Johannesburg – Popular dancer and choreographer Bontle Modiselle joined Procter & Gamble (P&G) representatives and hundreds of Soweto learners in a grassroots campaign aimed at challenging stigma, and taboos around menstruation and period poverty.
A session with the Always Keeping Girls in School Brand Nurse highlighted the challenges and best practices regarding menstrual hygiene.
A thrilling dance routine led by the campaign ambassador, Bontle, to the new “Always Blood Sisters” song (and social media campaign) was unveiled and performed on the day.
“It’s all well and good to be in the entertainment industry, get the fame and other by-products that come with what you do, but it’s always been important for me to be part of the conversations that matter,” said Bontle.
“Making an impact in life on the things that are meaningful is as important as getting into the minds of these young girls and connecting with them in a language and ways that they understand.
“We know that they love dance and music, it’s all the things I love too; so why not connect with them in the language they know very well without trying too hard.”
The Always Keeping Girls in School program aims to empower young girls by transforming the value of a sanitary pad from mere protection to a symbol of a step closer to education and a fulfilling life.
Alicia Eggington, General Manager for P&G South Africa, Botswana, and Namibia, said she was excited about the campaign.
“Our objective is to encourage individuals to walk alongside South African girls, one sanitary pad at a time,” said Eggington.
A sanitary pad signifies progress toward education and a brighter future. South Africans can join this initiative by donating sanitary pads to these young girls through our current drive.”
To show commitment to fighting period poverty, P&G said it donated a six-month’s supply of Always sanitary pads to hundreds of learners on the day.
P&G said the company was “proud to announce the launch of its revolutionary campaign #AlwaysBloodSisters in support of Menstrual Hygiene Day 2023”.
This year the theme was “Making Menstruation a Normal Fact of Life by 2030” and speaks directly to P&G and Always’ mission to promote awareness and challenge the stigmas around menstrual hygiene and management
Today, 1 in 10 girls in Africa miss school as a result of their period and P&G is doing its part to break down the barriers to education caused by period poverty.
The event to commemorate
World Menstrual Hygiene Daywas held last week on Friday, (26 May 2023), at Thutolore Secondary Schoo
l, Meadowlands, in Soweto..
Bontle, one of South Africa’s top choreographers and lead influencer for the #AlwaysBloodSisterCampaign, is herself, a beneficiary of the P&G Always Keeping Girls in School program having taken part in a dance activation during her high school years.
“It’s an amazing experience for me to have come full circle and to give back to the program as it gave to me all those years ago.” said Bontle.
She added: “Every girl deserves to go to school without fear of missing classes because of her period.
“With the #AlwaysBloodSisters campaign, P&G is making sure that girls have access to menstrual hygiene products and the education needed to succeed.”
Eggington said the Always Keeping Girls in School program aims to empower young girls by transforming the value of a sanitary pad from mere protection to a symbol of a step closer to education and a fulfilling life.
She said P&G has launched the #AlwaysBloodSisters social media movement and urges everyone to participate in the cause to drive awareness and play their part in ending period poverty.
“The campaign seeks to foster a sense of sisterhood and motivate people to donate sanitary pads that will be distributed to underprivileged girls in South African high schools,” explained Eggington.
“‘his programme supports the Sustainable Development Goals, which aims to ensure that all girls have access to quality menstrual hygiene products and education.”
Eggington said the accurate dissemination of information on menstruation and menstrual hygiene is critical in eradicating stigmas and taboos surrounding the topic.
She said education fosters a healthy attitude towards menstruation, enabling girls and women to manage their periods with confidence and dignity.
“P&G’s Always Keeping Girls in School focuses on three key areas: access to menstrual products, menstrual health and hygiene education, and challenging stigma, shame, and self-confidence surrounding menstruation,” said Eggington.
“Always has donated over 50 million pads to more than one million girls across Africa, and the brand is determined to do more in the future.
“Visit Always P&G’s website or follow the #ALWAYSBLOODSISTERS hashtag on social media to learn more about the Always EPP campaign and how you can support the cause.
“Let us collaborate to end period poverty and ensure that no one is left behind because of menstruation by 2030.”
Eggington said the objective was to encourage individuals to walk alongside South African girls, “one sanitary pad at a time”.
She added: “A sanitary pad signifies progress towards education and a brighter future.
“South Africans can join this initiative by donating sanitary pads to these young girls through our current drive.”