AYANA is excited to announce that we are partnering with the Centre for Livelihoods and Support to Sustainable Development (CLISSD) which recently held our Youth Innovation Lab program in 3 different regions in Cameroon.
"[The young people] live with the problems and should be involved to solve their own problems. All they need is skill-building and empowerment," said Epamba Comfort, the founder of CLISSD. "That is how I founded CLISSD, too, from challenges I faced as a young girl struggling to get education in a rural community which didn't support girls' education."
We are amazed by Epamba's drive to create an organization that supports the marginalized groups in the community and are thrilled to be partnering with CLISSD. You'll see that one of the ideas is to improve menstrual hygiene product access for young women. In Cameroon, a CLISSD survey found, 80% of girls and women in 3 rural communities lack access to sanitary pads. They live on an average income of less than $1/day and disposal pads cost $1.50, which they cannot afford. Consequently, they end up using dirty cloths, papers, mattress stuffing, and other unsafe materials. This has a negative impact on adolescent girls' health and education; with absenteeism of menstruating girls up to 4-5 days every month, and 52 days a year, which leads to them eventually dropping out. Economically, it has a huge impact for women and their families, as women miss their source of income because they stay at home during their period.
"Together, we will strive to create a lot of impacts in Cameroon," Epamba said. We are looking forward to hearing all of their ideas and making an impact!