'Sanitation in schools as important as books'

'Sanitation in schools as important as books'

A napkin icinerator installed in a govt school

Toilets in a government girls’ school in south Delhi do not get clogged these days. Also, many students also stopped taking long leaves from school during periods.

Thanks  to a new sanitary napkin incinerator installed in a government school in MMTC colony, overflowing toilets have become history  as girls are no more dumping used sanitary napkins  in them.

“The problem has been solved with the help of a corporate sponsor who bore the cost of the Rs 30,000 incinerator,” said Rani Patel, head of NGO Aarohan that played a key role in offering a solution.

“Sanitary napkin incinerators are as important as books in girls’ schools. I wish the government takes note of this school’s model and helps in extending similar facility in all institutions,” said Patel.

After the successful installation of the sanitary napkin incinerator, the attendance of students in the MMTC school also improved.

A school teacher, who refused to be identified, said: “Students themselves tell us that they have stopped taking  forced leave during periods. Clean toilets are also being appreciated.”

Patel said teachers of the school were aware of the problem behind toilets getting clogged with used sanitary napkins but, for some reason, they could never raise the issue with department authorities.

The issue came up for discussion informally and we decided to help the institution, said NGO Aarohan’s chief.

“The lack of facility for disposal of sanitary napkins and free napkins was also forcing girls to stay away from school for days together,” said Patel, who is a nominated member of the MMTC-based school’s management committee.

Her NGO, which holds tuitions for under- privileged girls studying in government schools also conducted a random survey among students to find out the real problem behind dropping out.

“Some of the girls were upfront about the problem of disposal of sanitary napkins in schools and confided in us that most girls were just dumping these in toilets, resulting in insanitary conditions,” said Patel.She said it took her some time to look for a solution and a sponsor.

“Our corporate partners were sensitive enough to react promptly and support the cause, which is very important” she said.

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