HOCIC Zimbabwe, under its Protecting the Psycho-Social Wellbeing of Children During Covid 19 (PPWCC) programme thrives to stop period poverty and promote hygiene in the Self- Help Group Approach communities currently hurdled by COVID-19 effects.
Matabeleland North’s Bubi and Umguza, as well as Matabeleland South’s Umzingwane’s beneficiaries of the PPWCC received a bar of soap per household. Each girl child above the age of 12 and below the age 18 in the household received 6 packs of sanitary pads.
Bubi ward 13 PPWCC beneficiaries gathered in three points, Battlefield, Clonmore and Gloag to receive their soap and sanitary wear.
The Project Officer of Self Help Group Approach, a running project under HOCIC’s Women Economic Empowerment strategic focus, Pesistance Mkwena said “We have managed to distribute 2 months’ food packages to families with children (below 18 years) and PPEs to Village Health Workers (VHWs), SHGA Community Facilitators (CFs) and Child Protection Committees (CPCs), and today we are in Bubi to distribute a bar of soap to each beneficiary household and sanitary wear to adolescent girls and young women who were registered under this programme.”
Period poverty has been haunting Bubi girls as pads are very expensive and not readily available. Parents were grateful for the relief over the burden of pad buying as they have a limited source of income due to Covid 19 restrictions.
“A heavy load has been lifted off our shoulders as parents as our source of income has been affected by Covid 19. Our girls’ menstrual cycles did not stop even though there is Covid 19 and we could hardly get them pads as they are too expensive,” said one of the PPWCC beneficiaries from Battlefields, a member of ‘Sithand’ ukuthuthuka” SHGA group, Esnathi Moyo.
PPWCC beneficiaries commend HOCIC and Kindernothilfe for working together in helping them have a sustainable livelihood through the SHG approach and still continue to help them even in this time of need where Covid 19 and its effects have destroyed many lives.
“If not for HOCIC and KNH, even after surviving from this deadly virus, Covid 19, we would have died of hunger and womanhood could have been a laughing stock in this community,” said the Bubi ward 13 Councillor’s wife, from Clonmore, Esnathi Sibanda.
Another beneficiary from Clonmore, Tsungirirai Zimharo, added on Sibanda’s words saying this programme has also improved the participation and attitude of women towards the SHG approach, for more new groups have been opened.
Beneficiaries plead for the extension of the program which was meant to last for three months to at least the end of harvest time.
“It is our request that this programme may be stretched until harvest time. We thank you for the packages you have helped us with, but if you do not continue to come after next month, we will not be having any other source since Covid 19 has not ended and its effects are still on the ground,” said Zimharo.