With regard to the Flobox campaign I MATTER Initiative led by their executive director Anne Marie, visited east africa university for the official launch of the FLOBOX campaign which aims at having box with pads at public places . The visit was as a result of an invitation by the campus’ URUBUTO gender club led by the club’s president Felix Hirwa.
The launch is intended to enable women and girls to have easy access to pads in cases where they are having their cycle but do not have pads .
The flobox campaign is one of the many attempts at achieving their end goal which is to End period poverty in Rwanda and destigmatize menstruation through providing skills in Sexual Reproductive Health and Rights (SRHR) and Menstrual Hygiene Management (MHM).
I Matter Initiative is a Non-Government Organisation registered under Rwanda Governance Board, was created in 2019 and was approved by Rwanda Government Board in 2020. I Matter was founded to help provide access to feminine hygiene products and reproductive justice education. They have a vision to create a world where girls are empowered to be active changers of their future.
At the launch that was attended by the gender club mebers, the club patron ,the campus director and the vice chancellor . The I Matter communications officer Happy Umutesi , talked about some of the major activities they have done or are doing such as advocating for the removal of tax on pads and adressing rising cases of teenage pregnancies during covid 19 pandemic.
The visitors also got the opportunity to visit the campus sickbay to which they donated pads to be kept in shelves so as to aid the female population in line with the Flobox campaign.
Whilst making remarks ,the club patron madam Zuhura made an inquiry about the organisation introducing re-usable pads might be a better solution instead of the normal pads which are relatively more costly to acquire, to that Anne Marrie responded that they were in the process of approval .
The campus director Ms. Aline also noted that it was important to have other initiatives in addition to donation of pads ,such as programs of girls to get open talk spaces and provision of painkillers to aid girls facing crumping during menstruation.
“We want to help as many girls as possible but we cannot do that as an individual organisation ,thus it is important that everyone is part of this movement so that we can help the girls together because this is a big issue”Happy Umutesi.