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Pinkishe, A Foundation Started By Father-Daughter Duo In Delhi Is Working Towards Ending Period Poverty In India

The foundation has several initiatives and projects they run across India, targeting different sectors - corporate, schools, rural societies, urban societies, etc.

It was Khyati Gupta, who approached her father, Arun Gupta, to pay attention to the issue of lack of menstrual health and hygiene among several women and girls belonging to the economically weaker sections of the society.

Mr. Gupta founded the Pinkishe foundation with his friend Shalini Gupta, as at the time, Khyati was young to understand the nitty-gritty of kind of the work that goes in building an organisation.

One of the many programmes that the foundation runs is 'PadBank'. This programme works towards making menstrual education and products accessible to schoolgirls and those from economically weaker backgrounds. The members and volunteers manufacture and distribute sanitary pads for free to the needy while enhancing their awareness levels on the subject of menstrual hygiene.

Kagaz Ke Pad: This is a unique programme that aims to generate money from old newspapers collected from households and offices, and further sold to scrap dealers. The money raised is used in the menstrual hygiene programme ?Padbank', to distribute free sanitary pads, install pad vending machines, and provide menstrual hygiene awareness to needy girls and women.

'Sakhi', is a zero-cost, sustainable menstrual literacy support programme for schools run by the foundation. It is built around constructing sustainable literacy support infrastructure at no additional cost, within the schools to ensure every girl has proper, timely knowledge about menstruation and that support is readily available when needed.

The foundation partners with schools to create menstrual educators, which include faculty members, who are provided with learning resources and mentoring support to become Certified Menstrual Educators. These CMEs further educate girls above nine years of age about menstrual health and hygiene.

The Pinkishe foundation also runs a project called ?Praveena', wherein they teach stitching and sewing to the rural women.

Not only have the women been learning stitching and sewing for the past year, they are now involved in making eco-friendly cloth pads with the foundation.

The foundation uses a casement fabric for the six layer pad that they manufacture. The pad is in the shape of a handkerchief, with a flap at the back which has a snap fastener that is used to tie the pad with the under garment. Each pad can be used for up to two years.

In the last six years, Pinkishe has distributed over five million packets of sanitary pads free of cost. They have reached out to more than 5 lakh women directly and provided menstrual literacy through on-the-ground education to over 2 lakh girls.

The foundation aims to raise a community of 100,000 menstrual educators who will further train millions of young adolescent girls on menstrual health and hygiene every year.

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