A UGANDAN START-UP IS PRODUCING AFFORDABLE SANITARY PADS FROM SUGARCANE
First, I don't exactly sugarcane, but after reading this story up and now writing it, i'm sure I've had my last taste of it.
Following the recent price hike, one thing that no female took kindly to, was the increased purchase value attached to sanitary pads. Like it is not hard enough that I have to bleed for about week because once again I chose to not get pregnant, but now i'd pay a lot more money to go through unwanted pain. Fix it mother-nature. Fortunately for me I can still grudgingly pay for it, but what of the million other teenage girls with barely enough money to get by, having this one extra worry added to their cart? It is on this premise that a Ugandan start-up company opted for a cheaper method of production for sanitary pads.
Eco Smart pads is a startup working to create a more affordable alternative brand of pads from sugarcane to help girls stay in school. Sugarcane fibers, are a low-cost, absorbent alternative. They boil the sugarcane residue to remove the sugar content and to soften it, the dried fiber is then used to fashion out sanitary pads. Eco Smart pads are reusable for up to 12 months, and they last up to 9 hours before they need changing. These pads are biodegradable, and hence safe for the environment.
The UN estimates that one in ten girls in sub-Saharan Africa do not attend school during menstruation. This causes them to lag behind in their education, and even drop out of school entirely, creating negative long-term consequences. In the advent of this innovation, the Eco Smart company recently won a grant of 10,000 US dollars in a competition that supports entrepreneurs seeking to address sexual reproductive health challenges.