In Malawi, one of the poorest countries in the world, a single sanitary pad costs roughly a day’s pay. As such, many young women who can’t afford feminine hygiene products turn to makeshift alternatives including rags, banana fibers, mattress foam and toilet paper while on their periods.

In October of 2016, photographer Julia Gunther spent three and a half weeks in Malawi at the Green Malata Entrepreneurial Village. The village, set up by the Children’s Fund of Malawi, provides local teenagers, mostly orphans, training in tangible skills like welding and carpentry, supplying them with sustainable tools to make a living.

When she arrived at Green Malata, Gunther learned that one of the sustainable skills offered to the young women was learning to tailor and sell reuseable sanitary pads. One “School Girl Pack” featuring three pads and a pair of underwear sells for around $3.50. Each pad is easily washable and is meant to be reused for extended periods of time.

This simple yet revolutionary measure provides Malawian girls with affordable and sustainable means to attend school while menstruating.

Read the entire article here

Photos copyright by Julia Gunther

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