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IMPACT: 'Free sanitary napkins for poor students'

In a novel initiative, Delhi government will soon make available sanitary napkins free of cost to girl students from poor families in all schools run by it to ensure that their attendance do not suffer due to hygiene-related issues.

The initiative is being taken to address high levels of absenteeism by girls students from poor families.

"We had decided to come out with the scheme after finding that a large number of girl students skip school because of monthly periods," an official said.

The napkins will also be made available in all gender resource centres (GRC) across the city. The government had set up nearly 100 GRCs which are one stop shop for to get benefits of various government schemes.

As the poor families cannot afford to buy sanitary napkins for their children. So keeping that in mind government is coming out with the scheme.

Although there is no data available on how hygiene- related issues affect education of girl students from poor families in Delhi, a study (http://www.acralive.org/2011/02/68-rural-women-cant-afford-sanitary.html) carried out recently had thrown light on the dismal state of feminine hygiene care in India.

The study said about 68 per cent rural women in the country cannot afford sanitary napkins available in the market.

The survey said among the adolescent rural girls, 23 per cent (aged 12-18 years) discontinue studies due to inadequate sanitary facilities in schools.

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