Life in Nepal is hard. Life in rural Nepal is very hard. Life as a female in a village in Nepal is extremely hard. You will probably live in a home without electricity or running water. You will eat only what your family can grow or rear. You will have very little furniture and an open fire will burn in the one room in which your family live. Walking to school, if there is one, is likely to be anything between two and four hours away and you will walk across rough terrain in all weathers to get there. You will have little, if any access, to health facilities. You may have one change of clothing, but probably not. Then you will start to bleed.
You will have no idea what is happening to you only that you are afraid and worry that you are going to die. No one will tell you what, why or when this happens. You will be told that it is normal and you will free bleed or use anything to hand which may result in soreness and infection. You will have no safe and hygienic sanitary protection.That means you are unable to leave the home, have to try to wash the blood away in a local stream and wait for it to stop. You cannot go to school or complete any chores. And that’s the good news.
If you live in a village where Chhaupadi is the norm you will be segregated from the family, made to live in an outside shed with others who are menstruating and barred from touching anything for fear you will contaminate it and render it useless. You will be considered to be impure.
DCWC Tara Project aims to address this by providing Nepali women with the opportunity to learn more and make their own reusable sanitary protection. We aim to provide sewing machines, all suitable materials to make sanitary kits alongside a comprehensive education programme, which will afford girls and women the privacy and freedom from the current limitations imposed by lack of education and money. We would love to help all our sisters in Nepal but that’s unlikely to happen, so we have started with aiming to help those living in two areas in Nepal. We hope this will provide employment for some and empowerment for all. The kits will be distributed as everything is distributed in Nepal - by walking long distances sometimes over many days.
It is unrealistic to expect women who have no money to be able to pay for the kits so we intend to supply them free of charge. We calculate that every young girl will need about 24 kits over their menstrual life so we have a big job ahead. Days for Girls have been fantastic in providing kits free of charge and allowing us to use their patterns. They do a fabulous job and fully support our endeavour to facilitate Nepali women to work together to improve their lives.
If you want to help us to help them to help each other we have a Giving page on the Virgin Just Giving site. Whatever you decide to do many thanks for taking the time and caring enough to read about our project. There is more information on the DCWC website…………………….
Sue and Jenni.
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DCWC Nepal Tara Project, 18 St Albans road, St Annes on sea, Lancashire, FY8 1TH

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