Free sanitary pads for adolescent schoolgirls

Kathmandu, January 1

The government has issued the Sanitary Pad (Distribution and Management) Procedure-2019 to provide sanitary pads for adolescent girls studying in community schools free of cost.

The procedure aims to improve menstrual hygiene of adolescent girls and solve the problem of absenteeism and drop-out among them due to menstrual cycle. A notice issued by the Ministry of Federal Affairs and General Administration yesterday said the government had provided budget for all community schools as conditional grants to operate the scheme from 31 December 2019 to 16 July 2020.

The government will bear Rs 1,096 per girl student of community schools of remote districts, while Rs 977 will be allocated for each girl student up to Grade XII in other districts.

The Ministry of Education, Science and Technology, in association with local levels and district-based education development and coordination units will ascertain the number of girl students at community schools. The government had announced this scheme through its policies and programmes for 2018-19.

All girl students enrolled at community schools will have free access to sanitary pads as and when required. The government has assigned the responsibility to determine quality of sanitary pads to Ministry of Health and Population.

MoSTE will call on various national and international non-governmental organisation to deposit cash in a pool fund as part of managing budget for procurement and distribution of sanitary pads.

The MoHP will coordinate with the MoFAGA, local levels and EDCUs to provide training for various stakeholders for safe disposal of used sanitary pads.

According to the procedure, concerned local levels will lead the distribution of sanitary pads for girl students at schools. Each girl student will get sanitary pads not exceeding 16 for each menstrual cycle. Monitoring of distribution will be carried out by provincial ministry of social development.

The procedure requires schools to dispose of the used sanitary pads in such a way that they don’t have adverse impact on environment. This scheme is expected to increase the attendance rate of girl students at schools.