UNICEF has shed light on a gray area in Kenyan society. Some Kenyan girls exchange their body for sanitary pad according to the report from UNICEF
In the west of the country, this figure is 10%. According to UNICEF, 54 percent of Kenyan youth have difficulty accessing primary menstrual hygiene products. Of those who go to school, 22% report buying their own menstrual products themselves.
For UNICEF, two main reasons are central to this finding. Poverty and the fact that this type of product is not sold in some parts of the country outside cities. Other factors come into play. The rules in this country are considered a subject to taboo and in most countries of the world.
The result is caused due to lack of information for young girls who do not get information from the school either.
How does the system work?
Motorcycle and taxi drivers would use the young women’s precariousness to force them into prostitution in exchange for goods. They would also use the taboo surrounding the rules in Kenya. As soon as they see their practices, girls do not dare to talk to their families.
“The UNICEF survey indicates that 76 percent of women and girls in Kenya have poor access to clean water or sanitation during their period. Only 17.5% of schools have toilets with handwashing and soap.”
According to global resolutions, a law passed in 2017 requires schools to distribute free sanitary towels to students. More generally, on the African continent, one in ten girls miss school because of menstrual precariousness.