Building Opportunities - BOFEBH
1. Project Name and Introduction
Building Opportunities for Economic Empowerment and Better health (BOFEBH)
This is a Women Led Enterprise to Produce Sanitary Napkin for Underprivileged Women and Adolescent Girls in, Hussainabad block of Palamu, Jharkhand.
Jharkhand is one of the most affected states as far as low level of education and health is concerned. Illiteracy, exploitative practices at different levels, Moneylenders and employers/contractors in these regions further degrade the socio-economic condition of these laborers. Hussainabad (also known as Japla) is a town and a sub division in Palamu district in the Indian state of Jharkhand. It is on the border of Jharkhand & Bihar. The status of the women in the area is very pathetic they mainly support family in Household chores. The average size of the family in the area is 6-8.The area witnesses quite a high maternal mortality rate. The status of the education in girls is poor particularly in Muslim and SC population as they have to take care of the family and manage household chores as entire family. The area observes a high dropout rate of Muslim girl and SC child ranging from age 6 years and above which is approximately 92%. Major reasons for high dropout rate of Muslim girls is poverty followed by cultural environment of the region which includes early marriage, no higher education for girls and wasting no resources on girls education as the family has limited resources. The poor quality of education in primary schools is another reason for high drop rate because community has a feeling that why to waste resources on education when quality and good education is not ensured, its better they should drop studies and extend support to family.
SSK has started a Women led enterprise to produce low cost sanitary napkins for promoting healthy menstrual hygiene practices- Setting up of production unit of sanitary Napkins by rural adolescent girls. Under this innovation a production unit of sanitary napkins in remote rural area will be setting up. The unit will produce low cost high quality sanitary napkins to the rural women and girls. The rural girls will market and promote hygienic menstruation practices in village and neighboring villages in Hussainabad block of Palamu district, SSK adolescent group network as community level cadres. About 50 Villages girls are member of the network consisting 400 adolescent memberships. The model will catalyze through the members of the group. It is estimating that, these 400 adolescent girls will reach the product to 1 lac families in the same block and neighboring areas also.
Location of the Unit - Tikarpar Village of Mahuari Gram Panchayat under Hussainabad Block (Japla) of Palamau District, Jharkhand.
Started in October 2016, this project will be there for 2 years to bring sustainability amongst the direct beneficiaries and the unit, so that after two years it can operate on its own.
- To establish and start manufacturing of low cost/ effective sanitary napkins in scientific way for better health and hygiene among rural women and girl
- To engage rural unemployed Women and girls in production and marketing also to fulfill the community requirements in various parts
- To provide and supplied low cost and quality based sanitary napkins for rural women in comparatively low price than the market price
- To popularize and sensitize the use of sanitary napkins among rural Women and girls to prevent them from vaginal diseases and better health care
4. Target Groups
Direct beneficiaries will be those adolescent girls who are associated with SSK through SHG’s or our literacy centers and our other initiatives. This number starts with around 500 and indirect beneficiaries will be from other 1 lac households in the block.
5. Key Components
One of the USP of this project is the innovation while handling this project.
Idea is Unique in terms of: Low-cost Sanitary Napkin-making Unit. At a modest capital and also operational with exposed minimal Infrastructure yet a quality and hygienic end product for rural women and adolescent girls. Setting up of Micro Enterprise unit at rural areas by underprivileged Women and adolescent and thus generate more employment opportunities, Spread Menstrual Hygiene in the most neglected sections of society. Reduces the players involved in the supply chain -- the third person to handle the product is the consumer. The technology and raw material will be used is simple and non-chemical. The machinery used is purely mechanical processes such as grinding and de-fabrication, pressing and sealing to convert the raw material -- into a napkin. The processing unit can provide employment opportunities to rural women and side by side provide an easily available hygienic product at door step. We want to provide dignity to rural women. This approach can help to reduce the stigma attached with menstrual problems or issues at rural areas.
Project Implementation and Activities
a. Identification and Selection of Site for Establishment of Unit- The proposed place is the learning centers, which is accessible and unemployed girls and Women can easily and comfortably work from here.
b. Setting-up of sanitary Napkins manufacturing Unit- Sanitary Napkin production machine, wooden furniture other required tools and machineries will be purchased and setting-up in the unit. Some experienced resource person will be hired to setting up of unit.
c. Identification and Selection of production staff and management staff- SSK will engage rural adolescent girls and Women in manufacturing and marketing of the product.
d. Capacity building of Manufacturing and Marketing staffs- Under the innovation selected Women and Adolescent girls will undergo a number of trainings and capacity building programs on production of napkins and marketing strategies.
- Training on napkins manufacturing and handling machineries
- Training on marketing skills for staffs
- Exposure visit to well establish Unit in Uttar Pradesh
e. Unit Promotion and community awareness program- All Community based groups will be involve in program promotion activities such as community meeting, campaign, advertisement and community awareness program on menstrual hygiene and use of Sanitary pads. To make these napkins easily available; all schools and colleges will be approached situated in local area.
f. Disposal management- Along with Sanitary pad packet one disposal packets will also provided. In the packet instruction to hygienic dispose of packet will be in detail.
g. Marketing Approach- A strong strategy will be adopted to sell the napkin and ensure access in every villages and panchayat of the Husainabad block.
6. Key Outputs
- The innovation will empower rural women to improve their lives and communities through low-cost, locally manufactured sanitary pads.
- Build a viable and sustainable enterprise that will run efficiently by the Women and enthusiastic, energetic rural adolescent girls.
- Diverse on essential commodity towards sanitary napkins to poor women affordable rates without compromising the quality.
- At community level women and girls will enhance their employment opportunities and a cadre of empowered Women and girls will be built and strengthened.
- With low-cost technology innovation, Women and girls will not only be able to get access to affordable hygienic Sanitary Pads, but most importantly participate in the entire life cycle of the technology development process not just as users, but also as technology designers, manufacturers, marketers etc.
- Innovations will bring change the lives of rural women and remove taboos associated with menstruation. The approach will enable creation of multiple women micro entrepreneurs. The direct benefited and employed girls will create awareness about the benefit of using sanitary napkins. It is estimated that 2 lack families of the Hussainabad block of Palamu and nearby blocks; Women and girls will wear comfortable, safe and affordable sanitary pads.
Rizwan Adatia Foundation