A New Mexico group has been delivering a basic necessity to girls in third world countries. They’re products taken for granted here, but there it means young girls are getting educated, empowered and helping them work towards equality.
The story of a refugee from Nepal caught Christine Gildden’s attention four years ago.
“Told me about her life there…you can imagine just brutal,” Gildden said. “She nor any of the women who lived there had underwear or menstrual products.”
She said the girls resorted to using things like leaves each month.
“When the girls don’t have what they need each month, they’re embarrassed to go to school,” Gildden said.
Gildden founded “Women To Be” and came up with a washable, cotton product to start helping the millions of women and girls who can’t afford or don’t have access to feminine hygiene products. She said it keeps girls in school and keeps women from missing work.
“They retain a sense of dignity and self-confidence about themselves,” she said.
Gildden has delivered thousands of her feminine products underwear in Nepal, Guatemala, Mexico, and Zambia.
During his recent visit to New Mexico, the King of Zambia, Chitmukulu Kayanta Manga II, said the products will have a major impact on his country as he works to educate his people and works toward equality for women.
“In Africa, there’s inequality, especially discrimination against women,” he said “When our girls are educated, they will fight to be equal with men.”
Gildden also offers a reproductive health class, which she says helped young girls stay in school because they don’t get pregnant or become child brides.
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