Project Description

ApiAfrique Part II

  • Focus: Education, Women’s Empowerment, Health & Food Security
  • Location: Senegal
  • Start date: Immediately (until September 2022)
  • Club / Union : Soroptimist Club of  Vallauris-Sophia-Antipolis-Mougins (France)
  • Number of women/girls this project reached/will reach: 285

Funds needed:
€ 1,600

The Project

This project is the continuation of the initial project, APIARIQUE: https://soroptimist-projects.org/avada_portfolio/apiafrique/

Through this project, we want to perpetuate and allow the local Senegalese community to have access to healthy and innovative hygiene products, both for people and for the environment. To do this, we have imagined several actions, with as a second step, equipping the 285 girls of the Ngaparou middle school with reusable sanitary protection for the start of the school year in November 2022; a kit of 3 ApiAfrique pads + an explanation booklet on the menstrual cycle, i.e. more than 855 reusable sanitary pads!

That’s more than 855 reusable sanitary pads!

The college-high school of Ngaparou is located on the Petite Côte, 80 km from Dakar in the village of Ngaparou where the social enterprise ApiAfrique is located (in the region of Thiès).

The help of Soroptimist will allow:

  • Raising awareness of all high school girls in Ngaparou on the menstrual cycle,
  • Access for young girls to hygienic, healthy, ecological, reusable and quality products,
  • The creation of jobs at the local level (possible hiring of additional seamstresses to meet the production needs of the towels),
  • The possibility for young girls to go to school every day of their schooling, even during periods of menstruation,
  • The development of the empowerment of women in Ngaparou,
  • Support for a local social enterprise.

Expected results

  • Avoid school absenteeism of young girls,
  • Increase in the level of knowledge of girls and boys on the menstrual cycle,
  • Creation of local jobs within the social enterprise,
  • Waste reduction,
  • Protection against sexual violence.

The project contributes directly to the well-being of the local community. Young girls will no longer have to use imported disposable products made from chemical, synthetic, and sometimes even carcinogenic substances, a source of many hormonal imbalances.

Person of contact: Alicia CASPER FASOLI / alicia.casper.f@gmail.com 

Context

In Senegal, young girls are often absent from school during their periods, for lack of information, suitable toilets and financial means to obtain reliable sanitary protection. These absences have a real impact on their schooling and their social life, yet there are solutions.

Hygiene products available locally are either expensive, very poor quality or unreliable and 80% of girls who use disposable pads wash them before throwing them away for fear of “maraboutage”.

There is therefore great interest in ApiAfrique towels, but although they are very economical in the long term, they represent a fairly significant purchase for schoolgirls who have no income. This campaign seems to us to be a good way to continue to support these young schoolgirls and to create local jobs at ApiAfrique.

This project also responds to an environmental issue. Indeed, faced with the lack of means to manage waste in Senegal, disposable hygienic protections are often thrown into the pipes or in wild dumps to sometimes end up in the ocean. However, we know that a sanitary napkin takes more than 450 years to biodegrade in the sea or in nature. In order to preserve biodiversity, this project contributes to a waste reduction approach.

During our visit in March 2022, we also learned that young girls were confronted with scenes of sexual violence. On the occasion of the purchase of their sanitary napkins, young girls are offered a free product in exchange for their favors. It is a real constraint to prostitution.

Evaluation – Follow-up

The Soroptimists will follow the project on a daily basis and wish to establish a long-term relationship with the Franco-Senegalese social enterprise ApiAfrique, a reliable partner, who knows the field, with an important local network.

The list of donations received is being updated…

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