By Saheed Ibrahim
Youth-led non-governmental organisations have called on government and relevant stakeholders to implement policies that will provide access to leadership roles, education and safe menstrual hygiene for young girls.
The organisations, Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI) Ondo State Network, Acalypha Initiative and Elemzhope Foundations, made this call while sensitising students of Celestial Church of Christ Grammar School, Ondo on safe menstrual hygiene, career and leadership.
The founder, Acalypha Initiative, Kehinde Emmanuel Oyeleye said many young girls and ladies had no access to menstrual hygiene products/method, making it important for stakeholders in the country to bridge the gap by making menstrual pads available to the disadvantaged girls, just like his foundation had done.
He stated further that community engagement could be leveraged by the stakeholders to ensure safe and hygienic alternative methods to menstrual pads are provided for the girls with no access to the pads.
Also speaking at the “Safeflow campaign”, the Programme Coordinator, YALI Ondo Network, Azeez Bolarinwa Samson said the current generation must empower the young ones with knowledge and skills needed for them to become self-sufficient and take up leadership roles sooner or later.
He called for an end to cultural and religious laws that served as hinderances to the development of the girl child, adding that Nigeria as a country must take the front roll in ensuring every girl have access to education and other developmental opportunities
“We have a lot of cultural set back when it comes to lady’s taking up leadership roles in this part of a country there are a lot of cultural setbacks and I think we are trying to change the notions this time around in the sense that we are encouraging the young girls to take up leadership roles in this part of a country
There are a lot of cultural setbacks and I think we are trying to change the narrative this time around by the young girls to take up leadership roles.
Representing Elemzhope Foundation, Miss Toluwani Odukogbe called for policies that will liberate an average Nigerian girl from the shackles of poverty, negative cultural and religious influences, adding that no girl must have access to safe and hygienic monthly flow without any form of stigmatisation or setbacks.
Menstrual pads were distributed to the girls, followed by career, academic and leadership talks.