Local rotary club helps support the battle against period poverty in Africa

By Jessica Durston - 15 May 2023


Royal Wootton Bassett and District Rotary Club team up with The Fabric Shack in Malmesbury to support schoolgirls in Africa so they do not miss school days due to period poverty.

Many underprivileded African girls are missing a week of school each month due because they are having their periods and cannot afford sanitary pads.
Resorting to newspapers or rags or other materials, a lot of young girls are said to stay in the confines of their home. The Royal Wootton Bassett & District Rotary Club understand this can lead to dangerous health risks and a lack of education.

A spokesperson from the Rotary club said: "This is very un-dignifying for them, and it affects their self-esteem and ability to function. It limits the potential of young girls andwomen and promotes gender inequality as a major contributor to Global Poverty.

"Our Rotary Club using money from our fund raising events, are producing sanitary dressings, and pants which will be sent out to the Rotary Club of Durbanville who will distribute them to schoolgirls in the Malmesbury area, so they may lead a normal life and continue daily to receive an education at school."

Helen Chapman from The Fabric Shack in Malmesbury has been working with the Rotary club, helping them with this project.

She obtained all the materials required for the club to make the various articles - cutting every piece out herself and has now started sewing each piece together.

Helen has managed to get some volunteers from Malmesbury and the Royal Wootton Bassett Rotary Club to assist her with the sewing. Once all the packs are made, the team aim to make at least 50, and two pairs of pants will be included in each pack.

Linda Locke, President of the Royal Wootton Bassett & District Rotary Club said: "I cannot overstate the help Helen has given our club to get this project underway, spending so much of her free time to help these girls.  The completed packs will be transported to Africa and given to the young girls in need, so that they can then receive a full-time education."

The Rotary club say donations from those wishing to contribute to the cause will be gratefully accepted, and that individuals wanting to help out in the production of these packs, can contact Helen at the Fabric Shack on 01666 826841 or [email protected].

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