Girls address lockdown period woes

Kritika Pradhan
It was just days into the lockdown, and Yelahanka resident Mallika Kayastha was already distraught: The 19-year-old couldn’t find a single sanitary pad in the shops nearby!
This gave her an insight into the challenges women from poorer sections of the society face regularly, and led her and her friends Vedika Goyal, Ria Patel, Ananda Praveen, Ananya Praveen and Myra Chauhan start an initiative called Maahila.
Graduates from Bengaluru-based Vidyashilp Academy (VSA), they started this initiative to give sustainably produced reusable sanitary napkins to young girls and women in orphanages across the city.
“The pads will be sourced from ecoFemme —a women-led social enterprise based in Tamil Nadu. Each kit costs around Rs 500. We will be giving each girl a kit of four pads, each of which has a product life of three to five years,” said Mallika.
They received good response from people in India, the US and the UK, raising for their effort a whopping Rs 1.2 lakh in 24 hours through crowdfunding platform Milaap.
They will begin distribution and conduct feminine hygiene workshops in orphanages.
With a current bank balance of more than Rs 2 lakh, the team plans to expand its initiative to orphanages beyond Bengaluru.

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