Meet our local partner: Project Dignity in South Africa
Meet Susan Barnes and Project Dignity! One of our local partners in South Africa.
Hi Susan Barnes! Can you introduce yourself shortly?
I’m the founder of Project Dignity and the washable pads brand, Subz. I am married to Mike and we have two gorgeous daughters, Sharis 23 and Laikin 21. I love my family and especially my 3 amazing dogs: Angel, Stella and Diesel. I live in Durban, and am presently developing a clothing brand!
Can you tell us what is the overall goal with Project Dignity?
Our goal is to see all school girls in South Africa, attending school with sanitary dignity. Girls have access to sanitary pads and menstruation should not effect their lives negatively.
Can you tell us a little about how you work?
Project Dignity needs to raise funds in order to distribute Subz washable sanitary pads free of charge to the girls (Edit MPIA: Susan Barnes is the creator of the washable pad, Subz pads). When we distribute the Subz packs to the identified school and their girl child learners, we offer a full female health educational program. This is vital information that not always told to the girls as it is a taboo subject in the culture and therefore their homes.
Why is menstruation important to work with when trying to increase school attendance?
Both my daughters have dyslexia and if they had missed a week of school every month, it would have been very difficult for them to catch up the missed school work. This impacted me hugely why women need to be compromised as they menstruate which is a natural bodily function. As rural girls don’t have access to sanitary pads, they miss school when menstruating. They therefore need access to sanitary pads to attend school. Keeping girls in school, bring down the teenage pregnancy level and the spread of HIV.
Thank you Susan for the introduction! Stay tuned for more posts about our local partners.