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Always and National Geographic Partner to Empower Girls in Africa Through Education and Menstrual Health

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In the bustling Katlehong Township near Johannesburg, a young girl named Amelia faces the challenges of puberty with resilience and hope. Her story is one of many being highlighted through a collaboration between Always and National Geographic, aiming to break the silence and stigma surrounding menstruation in African communities.

The initiative, known as the Always Keeping Girls in School program, is deeply rooted in Always’ mission to bolster the confidence of women and girls, empowering them to pursue their dreams without hindrance. This effort is also part of Procter & Gamble’s broader commitment to gender equality, striving to create a world where everyone is seen as equal.

Globally, the onset of puberty is often a critical juncture where girls’ confidence plummets. In many African societies, cultural stigmas and taboos around menstruation mean that girls frequently lack crucial information about puberty, leaving them unprepared for their first periods. Compounding this issue, girls from impoverished backgrounds often cannot afford period products, leading to their absence from school, sports, and social activities during menstruation. This absence can escalate to chronic absenteeism and, in some cases, cause girls to drop out of school entirely.

The Always Keeping Girls in School program addresses these challenges head-on. By providing vulnerable girls with essential education about puberty and confidence, along with donations of sanitary pads, the program ensures that menstruation does not interrupt their education. Since its inception in 2008, Procter & Gamble has reached over 200,000 girls, distributing more than 13 million pads across South Africa, Kenya, and Nigeria.

“Menstruation should never be a barrier to a girl’s education,” says a spokesperson for Always. “Through this program, we are committed to ensuring that girls can continue their education and participate fully in all aspects of their lives, regardless of their menstrual cycle.”

Always is calling on the global community to join their mission. By sharing Amelia’s story and using the hashtag #AlwaysKeepingGirlsInSchool, individuals can raise awareness about the barriers menstruation can pose to education. Tagging @Always and @NationalGeographic in social media posts can amplify this crucial message and support the ongoing efforts to keep girls in school.

For more information on how you can support this cause, visit the Always and National Geographic websites.

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