Last May 28, 2018, the Regional Fit for School Program and the GIZ Cambodia Country Office hosted a networking event in celebration of the international Menstrual Hygiene Day. Menstrual Hygiene Day raises awareness of the challenges women and girls worldwide face due to menstruation and highlights solutions that address these, including through media work. It catalyses a growing, global movement for MHM and supports partnerships at global, regional, national and local levels. MH Day also creates opportunities for advocacy for the integration of MHM into global, national and local policies, programs and projects.
The networking event was co-organized with Plan International. Over 30 people from 12 organizations were welcomed by Dr. Chea Samnang from the Office of the Council of Ministers, and by the Country Directors of GIZ, Dr. Günther Riethmacher, and Plan International, Jan Joop Kleinrensink.
To kickstart a discussion among the participants from various Cambodian ministries and development partners, presentations took stock of MHM measures and activities in Cambodia by Plan International, RestoreOne featured the Menstrual Hygiene Cup as an alternative to sanitary pads and spiked participant´s interest to learn more about available materials and methods. The “Growth and Change” booklets, one focusing on puberty in girls, the other on puberty in boys, used by the Ministry of Education as learning materials for students across the country were presented to the audience, and a focus was put on WASH needs for women with disabilities.
The event was a great success, sparking lively and open debates. Participants asked questions and engaged and decided to meet again on June 8 for a follow-up to jointly discuss on next steps to move Cambodia forward on addressing menstrual hygiene for girls and women across the country.